Textile Technology section
Gore: implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals
A strategy to implement social and environmental programs is being introduced by the Technical Oriented Fabrics (TOF) business unit of the producer of functional textiles W. L. Gore & Associates Inc., Newark, DE/USA.
The Sustainability Framework reflects the Gore Fabrics Division´s commitment to protecting people and the environment while prolonging product life and the well-being of people at the same time. For the TOF Business Unit, this framework particularly reflects its continued effort to maximize the societal value Gore delivers through its operations, supply chains and innovations, as well as a commitment to reduce the environmental footprint that Gore’s operations and products have on the planet.
It is informed by global trends and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a set of worldwide accepted goals leveraged by many global companies as a "blueprint" to achieve a better world. From these UN goals, Gore identified 6 strategic areas as most relevant to Gore, as these represent the key global challenges in the apparel and footwear industry.
Shima Seiki: digitally transformation of the fashion supply chain
On April 27-29, 2021, at the 36th Spinexpo trade fair in Shanghai/China, the manufacturer of flat knitting machines Shima Seiki Mfg., Ltd., Wakayama/Japan, will introduce its new ApexFiz subscription-based design software. This is the latest addition to Shima Seiki’s proven SDS-one Apex series design system lineup.
Whereas previous Apex-series design systems were offered as an all-in-one proprietary hardware/software package, for the first time the company has released its new ApexFiz as subscription-based design software that can be installed on customers’ individual computers. Maintaining proven functions that have made the Apex series so popular with fashion designers, with ApexFiz those strengths are now enhanced with the added versatility to adapt to different work styles and business environments of the “new normal” including teleworking and telecommuting. ApexFiz software supports the creative side of fashion from planning and design to colorway evaluation, realistic fabric simulation and 3D virtual sampling. Otherwise known as “digital twins”, virtual samples are a digitized version of sample making that are accurate enough to be used effectively as prototypes, replacing physical sampling and consequently reducing time, cost and material that otherwise go to waste. This technology thereby helps to realize sustainability and digitally transform the fashion supply chain.
Kyocera: named as "Supplier Engagement Leader
Kyocera Corp., Kyoto/Japan, was recognized for reducing greenhouse gas emissions throughout its value chain. For the 2nd consecutive year and based on the 5th annual survey of suppliers of international non-profit organization CDP (Carbon Disclosure Project), London/UK, Kyocera has been recognized as a "Supplier Engagement Leader."
Through the global disclosure system created by CDP, the environmental impact with focus on the 3 areas climate change, forest sustainability and water security of companies can be disclosed. In particular, Kyocera was recognized for its leading qualities in environmental transparency and behavior, receiving an "A" grade among the more than 5,800 companies evaluated in 2020.
In addition, Kyocera's environmental awareness was also recognized by the Wall Street Journal last year, and was named to the list of the 100 most sustainable companies in the world.
Euratex: EU textiles strategy for long term competitiveness
2021 should be a turning point for the European textile and apparel industry. The European Apparel and Textile Confederation (Euratex), Brussels/Belgium, is concerned that the corona crisis may soon be followed by disruptions in the global supply chains, affecting the competitiveness of the textile and apparel industry.
Economic data up to December 2020 reflect a strong contraction in demand and production of textile and clothing items, caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Over the full year 2020, the EU turnover fell by 9.3% in textiles and by 17.7% in clothing, compared with 2019. The crisis was particularly felt in the middle of the year (with production losses over 50%). Towards the last quarter of 2020, business activity recovered in the textile industry (+1.6% as compared with the previous quarter), while it further deteriorated in the clothing sector (-6.8%), as a result of the decline in consumption expenditure and the slowdown in non-essential activities.
Looking forward, the EU Business Confidence indicator of March 2021 gained momentum, with a confirmed upward trend in the textile industry (+3.8 points), and a modest recovery in the clothing industry (+1.6 points). Also, the employment expectations indicator saw a robust increase.
However, raising prices of raw materials (textile fibers, dyestuffs, etc.) and transport costs, negative impact of CO2 prices and political turmoil in some important sourcing countries (China, Myanmar) create uncertainty, adding to the challenges of the corona pandemic.
On that basis, 2021 will be a critical year for the competitiveness of the European T&C industry. A forward-looking EU textiles strategy is essential in this context. The EU textiles strategy is expected for the 3rd quarter of 2021. While it is expected to put a strong focus on sustainability and circularity, Euratex insists the strategy should take a broader perspective and ensure long term competitiveness of this essential pillar of the European economy.