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Wes Fisher INDA Director of Government Affairs (c) INDA
Wes Fisher INDA Director of Government Affairs
22.09.2022

INDA: Wes Fisher new Director of Government Affairs

INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, has named government relations and external affairs strategist and advocate Wes Fisher as its new Director of Government Affairs to raise the association’s profile in Washington, D.C. He brings strong liaising skills advancing industries’ interest to regulatory agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food and Drug Administration, and state-level departments.

Most recently, he was senior director of government affairs at the Pet Advocacy Network where he led government relations and legislative strategy for the pet care industry’s national trade association.  Fisher’s background includes providing testimony on hundreds of bills and regulations for associations and creating policy positions, notably on single-use plastics and sustainability.
He has held positions working at the American Legislative Exchange Council and then the National Automatic Merchandising Association where he led state government relations and external affairs for the 1,000-members representing the vending and retail industry.   

INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, has named government relations and external affairs strategist and advocate Wes Fisher as its new Director of Government Affairs to raise the association’s profile in Washington, D.C. He brings strong liaising skills advancing industries’ interest to regulatory agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food and Drug Administration, and state-level departments.

Most recently, he was senior director of government affairs at the Pet Advocacy Network where he led government relations and legislative strategy for the pet care industry’s national trade association.  Fisher’s background includes providing testimony on hundreds of bills and regulations for associations and creating policy positions, notably on single-use plastics and sustainability.
He has held positions working at the American Legislative Exchange Council and then the National Automatic Merchandising Association where he led state government relations and external affairs for the 1,000-members representing the vending and retail industry.   

At INDA, he will serve as the liaison between the industry and government legislative and regulatory bodies by preparing formal submissions to the federal government articulating industry positions, and representing INDA on the Industry Trade Advisory Committee for Textiles and Apparel (ITAC 12) among other responsibilities in this key position.

Fisher holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA. He also sits on the board of directors of the Washington Area State Relations Group, and was appointed by the Governor of Virginia to serve on the State Rare Disease Council.

More information:
INDA Wes Fisher Government Affairs
Source:

INDA

Photo Pixabay
16.09.2022

Euratex, EuroCoton, Edana, CIRFS and ETSA join forces for the European Textile Industry

The associations published a joint European textiles industry statement on the energy package claiming incisive actions with no further delay.
Here is the statement in full:

Last month, when gas wholesale prices reached the record level of 340€/MWh – triggering also sky-high electricity prices – the European textiles industry called on the European Union to adopt a wholesale price cap for gas, the revision of the merit-order principle in the electricity market, support for SMEs and a single European strategy. On 14 September 2022, on the occasion of the State of the Union address by President Von der Leyen, the Commission announced initiatives aimed at tackling the dramatic energy crisis that the Europe is facing.

We, the European associations representing the whole textiles’ ecosystem,  welcome these proposals by the Commission to change the TTF benchmark parameters and decouple the TTF from the electricity market and the revision of the merit-order principle for the electricity market, which is no longer serving the purpose it was designed for.

The associations published a joint European textiles industry statement on the energy package claiming incisive actions with no further delay.
Here is the statement in full:

Last month, when gas wholesale prices reached the record level of 340€/MWh – triggering also sky-high electricity prices – the European textiles industry called on the European Union to adopt a wholesale price cap for gas, the revision of the merit-order principle in the electricity market, support for SMEs and a single European strategy. On 14 September 2022, on the occasion of the State of the Union address by President Von der Leyen, the Commission announced initiatives aimed at tackling the dramatic energy crisis that the Europe is facing.

We, the European associations representing the whole textiles’ ecosystem,  welcome these proposals by the Commission to change the TTF benchmark parameters and decouple the TTF from the electricity market and the revision of the merit-order principle for the electricity market, which is no longer serving the purpose it was designed for.

We also welcome the proposal to amend the state-aid framework that, in our view, should include the textiles finishing, the textiles services and the nonwoven sectors as well as a simplification of the application requirements. Furthermore, we call for a uniform implementation across the EU.

However, we acknowledge that the Commission proposal lacks in ambition and – if confirmed – it will come at the cost of losing European industrial capacity and European jobs. Ultimately, Europe will remain without its integrated textiles ecosystem, as we know it today, and no mean to translate into reality the EU textiles strategy, for more sustainable and circular textiles products.

An ambitious and meaningful European price cap on the wholesale price of natural gas is absolutely necessary. Europe is running out of time to save its own industry. It is now time to act swiftly, decisively in unity and solidarity at European level. We understand a very high price cap has been so far discussed among Ministries and that is not reassuring for companies across Europe: if any cap is, as expected, above 100/MWh, these businesses will collapse.

Already in March 2022, with EU gas wholesale prices at 200€/MWh, the business case for keeping textiles production was no longer there. To date, natural gas wholesale prices have reached the level of 340€/MWh, more than 15 times higher compared to 2021! Currently, many businesses have suspended their production processes to avoid the loss of tens of thousands of euros every day. We hope this will not become the new normal and – to reduce the likelihood of such a scenario – we call on the Commission, the EU Council and the Parliament to swiftly adopt decisive, impactful and concrete actions to tackle the energy crisis and ensure the survival of the European industry.

Given the dire international competition in which the EU textiles industry operates, it is not possible to just pass on the increased costs to consumers. Yet, with these sky-high prices, our companies cannot afford to absorb those costs. The EU textiles companies are mainly SMEs that do not have the financial structure to absorb such a shock.  In contrast with such reality in Europe, the wholesale price of gas in the US and China is 10€/MWh, whereas in Turkey the price is 25€/MWh. If the EU does not act, our international competitors will easily replace us in the market, resulting in the de-industrialisation of Europe and a worsened reliance on foreign imports of essential products.

Specific segments of the textile industry are particularly vulnerable:

  • The man-made fibres (MMF) industry for instance is an energy intensive sector and a major consumer of natural gas and electricity in the manufacturing of its fibres. Not only is it being affected by higher energy process, it is also experiencing shortages and sharply rising costs of its raw materials.
  • For the nonwovens segment, production processes – which use both fibres and filaments extruded in situ – are also highly dependent on gas and electricity. Polymers melting and extrusion, fibres carding, web-forming, web-bonding and drying are energy-intensive techniques. Nonwoven materials can be found in many applications crucial to citizens like in healthcare (face masks) or automotive (batteries).
  • It also is to be noted that for some segments the use of gas has no technological substitute: for example, the dyeing and finishing production units make very intense use of gas. These production units are mainly composed by boilers and driers, which only work on gas and there is no alternative technology.
  • The textile services sector is also struggling: with the critical nature of the service they provide, they require a considerable amount of energy to keep services, particularly hospitals and care homes stocked with lifesaving material as well as clothing and bed linens for the patients themselves. Losing these businesses would cause a lack of clothing for healthcare professionals, including protective sanitary gowns for surgeons, nurses and doctors, uniforms including other forms of personal protective equipment.
Source:

Euratex

15.09.2022

World Natural Fibre Update September 2022

World Natural Fibre Production in 2022 is estimated at 32.6 million tonnes, down 1.1 million tonnes from the estimate one month ago. Production reached 33.3 million tonnes in 2021 and 31.6 million in 2020.

A drought in Texas where over half of cotton produced in the United States is grown, and flooding in Pakistan, the fifth largest cotton producer, account for the decline (www.ICAC.org).

World Natural Fibre Production in 2022 is estimated at 32.6 million tonnes, down 1.1 million tonnes from the estimate one month ago. Production reached 33.3 million tonnes in 2021 and 31.6 million in 2020.

A drought in Texas where over half of cotton produced in the United States is grown, and flooding in Pakistan, the fifth largest cotton producer, account for the decline (www.ICAC.org).

  • Nearby cotton futures on the Intercontinental Exchange rose 14% from the end of July and finished August at $2.60 per kilogram.
  • The Eastern Market Indicator of wool prices in Australia, fell 1% from mid-July to mid-August to US$9.27 per kilogram.
  • Prices of jute fibre in India quoted by the Jute Balers Association (JBA) at the end of August converted to US$ fell 4% from a month earlier to 79 cents per kilogram.
  • Prices of silk in China equalled US$ 28.7 per kilogram at the end of August, compared with US$29.5 per kilogram in July 2022, a change of 3%.
  • Coconut coir fibre in India held at US cents 21 per kilogram in August.

World production of jute and allied fibres is estimated unchanged at 3.2 million tonnes in 2022 compared with 2021. High market prices in 2021 motivated farmers to expand planted area in both Bangladesh and India, but dry weather during June and July will limit yields per hectare. Normal monsoon rains resumed in South Asia during August, too late for the 2022 jute crop (https://www.wgc.de/en/).

Production of coir fibre rose by an average of 18,000 tonnes per year during the past decade, and production was at a record high of 1.12 million tonnes in 2021. Production is expected to remain high in 2022.

Flax has also been trending upward, rising by an average of 27,000 tonnes per year, and production in 2022 is estimated to remain above one million tonnes.

World wool production is forecast up by 5% in 2022 to 1.09 million tonnes (clean), the highest since 2018. Wetter weather in the Southern Hemisphere, following eight years of drought, is allowing farmers to rebuild herds (https://www.wool.com/market-intelligence/).

Natural fibres are heavily-traded commodities, and supply chain disruptions are causing significant economic losses as freight costs remain high and deliveries are delayed.

About 40% of world cotton production moves as fibre in international trade each season. Over half of world jute production moves as fibre or product, and around 55% of world wool production is exported as raw wool. Abaca, flax, and sisal are also heavily traded.

Most natural fibre exports traverse back-haul ocean freight routes from the Western Hemisphere to East Asia and the Middle East, from South Asia to East Asia and Europe, from Africa to East Asia and the Middle East, and from Australia and South Africa to China. Such routes are relatively underserved in the best of times, and reduced sailings since the start of Covid are restricting trade volumes.

As of the end of August, Freightos (https://fbx.freightos.com/) quoted the cost of moving a 40’ container from the United States West Coast to East Asia at $793, compared with $1,020 in March 2022. Nevertheless, average freight costs on back -haul routes used by natural fibres remain approximately triple their pre-covid levels. In addition to ocean freight costs, inland transportation is also affected by high fuel prices and a lack of containers. As one example, charges for inland handling of export containers in Bangladesh, the largest exporter of raw jute, increased by 48 per cent during August.

More information:
DNFI
Source:

Discover Natural Fibres Initiative

Matt O’Sickey Photo: INDA
Matt O’Sickey
12.09.2022

Matt O’Sickey INDA’s New Director of Education & Technical Affairs

  • Experienced nonwovens professional with extensive hygiene, food, medical, and packaging background will strengthen INDA’s key member service areas

INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, announced the appointment of Matt O’Sickey, Ph.D., as its new Director of Education & Technical Affairs. An accomplished market development, technology and product management executive, O’Sickey has more than 20 years of experience with Tredegar Film Products in the absorbent hygiene, food, and medical sectors.

Most recently, he held Director positions at RKW-North America in the areas of research and development, product design, application engineering, site operations, quality, and technology with a focus on breathable, and lamination films for controlled atmosphere packaging.

At INDA, O’Sickey will direct and expand workforce development programs for all industry members, manage the international harmonized standards activities, and play a leadership role in INDA’s product stewardship working groups and conference content development committees.  

  • Experienced nonwovens professional with extensive hygiene, food, medical, and packaging background will strengthen INDA’s key member service areas

INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, announced the appointment of Matt O’Sickey, Ph.D., as its new Director of Education & Technical Affairs. An accomplished market development, technology and product management executive, O’Sickey has more than 20 years of experience with Tredegar Film Products in the absorbent hygiene, food, and medical sectors.

Most recently, he held Director positions at RKW-North America in the areas of research and development, product design, application engineering, site operations, quality, and technology with a focus on breathable, and lamination films for controlled atmosphere packaging.

At INDA, O’Sickey will direct and expand workforce development programs for all industry members, manage the international harmonized standards activities, and play a leadership role in INDA’s product stewardship working groups and conference content development committees.  

O’Sickey has a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering and a Master’s degree in Engineering Administration, both from Virginia Tech as well as a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University. He holds three U.S. patents. He will operate out of INDA’s offices in Cary, NC.

O’Sickey succeeds Chris Plotz who left INDA to pursue other interests. 

More information:
INDA nonwovens Matt O’Sickey
Source:

INDA

(c) Chetna Organic / GoodTextiles Foundation
08.09.2022

GoodTextiles Foundation supports Indian village with cows

The GoodTextiles Foundation, initiated by Dibella, has implemented a new support project in India: Each family of a small village community of organic farmers received a cow from the donations received. The herd of fifty animals helps with farming, gives milk, produces sufficient natural fertilizer and should soon provide higher crop yields and a better income.

In 2016, Dibella established the GoodTextiles Foundation with the aim of making textile value chains more sustainable. It raises funds and implements its own support projects to benefit people at all stages of the textile economy. The most recent project, "One cow for every family," has now taken the first, important intermediate step: Fifty cows arrived in the small village of Aliguda Village (Utnoor Division, Adilabad, Telangana, India) at the beginning of June 2022.

The GoodTextiles Foundation, initiated by Dibella, has implemented a new support project in India: Each family of a small village community of organic farmers received a cow from the donations received. The herd of fifty animals helps with farming, gives milk, produces sufficient natural fertilizer and should soon provide higher crop yields and a better income.

In 2016, Dibella established the GoodTextiles Foundation with the aim of making textile value chains more sustainable. It raises funds and implements its own support projects to benefit people at all stages of the textile economy. The most recent project, "One cow for every family," has now taken the first, important intermediate step: Fifty cows arrived in the small village of Aliguda Village (Utnoor Division, Adilabad, Telangana, India) at the beginning of June 2022.

"Some of our organic cotton is grown on the farms of the village community managed by the smallholder organization Chetna Organic. During the filming of the German documentary "plan b", the farmers told us that they need more natural fertilizer to cultivate their fields ecologically and economically. The biggest wish of each family is therefore a cow. However, they cannot afford this because of the high price of the equivalent of 300 euros. That's how the idea for our next sponsorship project was born," reports Ralf Hellmann, managing director of Dibella and member of the foundation's board of directors.

In addition to the most important reason for purchase - the production of fertilizer - the cows also serve as livestock. They are harnessed in front of the plow and make the strenuous work of tilling the soil easier for the farmers. As draft animals they serve to transport heavier loads, and as milk suppliers they contribute to a family's food supply. Surplus milk that is not needed in the household also provides families with an important additional income through sale.

More information:
GoodTextiles Dibella donations cotton
Source:

GoodTextiles Foundation

Photo: Swissmem
05.09.2022

Swiss Textile Machinery Association: Symposium in Indonesia

  • Free trade deal boosts export potential

The time is right for Swiss textile machinery companies to grow their export business with Indonesia – one of the world’s top 10 textile producers. A free trade agreement between the two countries came into force in 2021, and market analyses show that there is scope for a significant increase in business in textile and textile machinery sectors.

This was the background to a successful symposium in the Indonesian capital Jakarta last month when Swiss Textile Machinery Association members presented their products and innovations to an invited audience of 200 delegates from Indonesian textile companies.

The symposium audience was welcomed by Philippe Strub, of the Swiss Embassy in Indonesia; Ignatius Warsito, from the Indonesia Ministry of Industry’s Chemical, Pharmaceutical and Textile Industry branch; Anne Patricia Sutanto, of the Indonesian Textile Association (API); and Ernesto Maurer, President of the Swiss Textile Machinery Association.

Swiss companies taking part were: Stäubli, Zeta Datatec, Loepfe, Saurer, Benninger, Rieter, Bräcker, Jakob Müller, Maag, Uster and SERV.

  • Free trade deal boosts export potential

The time is right for Swiss textile machinery companies to grow their export business with Indonesia – one of the world’s top 10 textile producers. A free trade agreement between the two countries came into force in 2021, and market analyses show that there is scope for a significant increase in business in textile and textile machinery sectors.

This was the background to a successful symposium in the Indonesian capital Jakarta last month when Swiss Textile Machinery Association members presented their products and innovations to an invited audience of 200 delegates from Indonesian textile companies.

The symposium audience was welcomed by Philippe Strub, of the Swiss Embassy in Indonesia; Ignatius Warsito, from the Indonesia Ministry of Industry’s Chemical, Pharmaceutical and Textile Industry branch; Anne Patricia Sutanto, of the Indonesian Textile Association (API); and Ernesto Maurer, President of the Swiss Textile Machinery Association.

Swiss companies taking part were: Stäubli, Zeta Datatec, Loepfe, Saurer, Benninger, Rieter, Bräcker, Jakob Müller, Maag, Uster and SERV.

The presentations were followed by panel discussions with speakers, and there were also networking opportunities at the companies’ exhibition tables.

Also taking part in a panel at the event was Testex, the independent Swiss organisation which provides testing, certification, OEKO-TEX® and other labels for the textile industry. Discussion focused on the relevance of innovation in textile technology to sustainability and ‘saving the planet.’  

Recent years have seen an acceleration in trade relations between Switzerland and Indonesia, which in 2008 was classed as one of eight priority countries for economic development cooperation by SECO, the Swiss Secretariat for Economic Affairs, with a joint economic and trade commission established the following year.
Collaboration was heightened further in 2018 with a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) for Indonesia with Switzerland and the other EFTA countries. This more extensive form of free trade agreement was accepted after a popular referendum, and ultimately came into force in November 2021.

Trading between the two countries is supported by SERV, the Swiss export risk insurance organisation. This insures export goods against political and commercial risks and facilitates credit.

Cornelia Buchwalder, Secretary General of the Swiss Textile Machinery Association, said the Indonesia Symposium was ideally-timed, right after the CEPA came into effect: “With the free trade agreement in place, there is even greater potential for the development of trade between our countries,” she said.

“Business in textile and textile machinery is actually below the relative market shares for the sectors, so this stronger cooperation is probably overdue. It was a successful symposium, with enthusiastic participation from Indonesian textile companies, so we are optimistic about future export prospects for Swiss textile machinery.”

Source:

Swissmem