Plant fibre composites contain typically a relative large amount of porosity, which considerably influences properties and performance of the composites. The large porosity must be integrated in the conversion of weight fractions into volume fractions of the fibre and matrix parts. A model is presented to predict the porosity as a function of the fibre weight fractions, and to calculate the related fibre and matrix volume fractions, as well as the density of the composite. The model predicts two cases of composite volumetric interaction separated by a transition fibre weight fraction, at which the combination of a high fibre volume fraction, a low porosity and a high composite density is optimal. Experimental data from the literature on volumetric composition and density of four types of plant fibre composites are used to validate the model. It is demonstrated that the model provides a concept to be used in fabrication, process optimisation and design of plant fibre composites. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.