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In just over a month, SPESA and the International Apparel Federation (IAF) will jointly host the 38th World Fashion Convention in Philadelphia, PA (October 22-25, 2023). This event is bringing together an impressive line-up of speakers and sponsors from companies across the globe. We’ve compiled recent news updates from some of those participating organizations. 

From Circ making Prince William’s list of finalists for the Earthshot Prize, to the launch of Yusuf Amdani’s Forbes book, to Aii leadership being named a Vogue Business innovator, this will offer an idea of the caliber of content to expect at the event.


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Port of Los Angeles Sees the First Volume Increase in 13 Month
Supply Chain Dive | September 19, 2023 

Cargo volumes at the Port of Los Angeles rose 3% YoY to 828,016 TEUs in August, marking the first increase in 13 months, port officials said. The recent 6-year contract ratification between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association helped restore stability and confidence to customers regarding where to ship their cargo, Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka said in a statement. Although port volumes increased in August, demand remains lower as shippers continue to face excess inventory levels.

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FABRIC Act Reintroduced in the U.S
EcoTextile News | September 18, 2023 

A bill that seeks to improve conditions for 100,000 U.S. garment workers is getting another shot at becoming law. Last week, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Congressman Jerrold Nadler reintroduced the Fashioning Accountability and Building Real Institutional Change, or FABRIC, Act, a move to put an end to what the New York Democrats describe as the “misuse” of piece-rate pay, which doles out pennies for every hem sewn or button stitched rather than a consistent wage. The measure also aims to boost domestic apparel manufacturing by creating a $50 million per year support program, administered by the Department of Labor. This comes after news last week that George Gascón, the Los Angeles County district attorney, announced that two people garment company owners in South Los Angeles have been charged after being accused in a seven-count felony complaint of underpaying their workers and subsequently lying about it. Additional coverage is available here.

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Heimtextil Returns in January with Focus on Textile Transformation
Just Style | September 18, 2023

The international trade show for home and contract textiles, Heimtextil Trends 24/25, is set to return January 9, 2024 in Frankfurt, Germany with a theme that will focus on textile transformation. Under the title “New Sensitivity,” the emphasis is on innovations and changes in the composition of textiles, in addition to aesthetic aspects. This includes plant-based textiles made from crops or plant by-products; technology and technical solutions transforming textiles; bio-engineered textiles; new coloring methods using naturally derived pigments; and regenerative textiles and materials.


BASF Invites Cotton Farmers to Discuss Regenerative Opportunity
Sourcing Journal | September 18, 2023 

“BASF is dedicated to creating a better future for cotton production and the cotton textile industry,” Ray Daniels, seed sustainability manager at BASF, said. “We understand that cotton farmers are the cornerstone of sustainable production, which is why we are giving them an international platform to share their ideas on how agriculture must meet the needs of present and future generations through profitability, environmental health, and social and economic equity.”


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Fashion Industry Urged to Aid Morocco’s Recovery Post-Earthquake
Apparel Resources | September 16, 2023

In the wake of a devastating 6.8 magnitude earthquake that struck Morocco earlier in September, the Ethical Trade Initiative (ETI) is rallying fashion buyers worldwide to contribute to the rehabilitation of Morocco’s fashion sector. Morocco serves as a crucial hub for all three sectors within ETI’s membership—apparel and textiles, food fishing and farming, and general merchandise. Inditex, the parent company of Zara, has already taken action, donating more than $3 million to Spain’s Red Cross in support of the Red Crescent’s humanitarian relief efforts in the earthquake-stricken areas. 

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How the UAW Strike Could Have Ripple Effects Across the Economy
NPR | September 16, 2023

Recent news about the United Auto Workers (UAW) strike has raised concerns across multiple industries about the potential impact the strike will have on the economy, supply chains, automotive suppliers, and more. While experts say the U.S. economy is already getting bruised, the strike’s impact isn’t likely to push the nation into a recession. But the ultimate impact of the strike depends on things like how long the strike lasts, if companies lay off workers at other plants, how many workers walk off their jobs, and how long the unions and companies take to negotiate a deal. Check out additional coverage here

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Recession Fears are Abating, but Manufacturers are Still Pessimistic: NAM Survey
Manufacturing Dive | September 15, 2023

Manufacturing leaders are less anxious about an oncoming recession, but workforce constraints and dull demand are leaving them pessimistic, according to a recent survey from the National Association of Manufacturers. In a sign of growing confidence in the U.S. market, 42% of manufacturers believed the economy would go into a recession in the next year, down from nearly 57% who believed so in June.

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Turning Waste Textiles into New Products in Hull
Innovation in Textiles | September 15, 2023

Yorkshire waste management firm MYGroup is building a sustainable textiles factory at its Hull site with a £500,000 investment that will create up to 30 jobs. The new factory will see waste textiles remanufactured end-to-end into new products in a UK-first that MYGroup says will put Hull on the map as an innovation center for textiles recycling, leading the charge in reducing the environmental impact of and promoting circularity in the fashion industry. Additional coverage can be found here

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PVH Ups Inventory Reduction Goal as Supply Chain Pressures Ease
Supply Chain Dive | September 14, 2023 

Apparel company PVH is targeting a 25% decrease in its inventory-to-sales ratio by the end of 2024 as supply chain improvements continue to accelerate, CEO Stefan Larsson said in a Q2 earnings call late last month. Inventory is up 6% compared to last year. The retailer expects inventory levels to be significantly lower in the second half of 2023 compared to last year, with continued improvement in 2024. The company, which owns brands Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger, is aiming for the strategy to help the company better align inventory levels with consumer demand, “one of the highest value drivers in our business,” Larsson said on the call. 

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What July’s OTEXA Numbers Say About the State of Apparel Imports
Sourcing Journal | September 12, 2023

According to OTEXA, imports of cotton, wool, man-made fiber, silk blends and non-cotton vegetable fiber textile and apparel products slid by 15.6% in July of this year, for a total of 14.89 billion square meter equivalents (SME). Broken out, imports of textiles were down 11.5% in July for a total of 593.9 SME, while imports of apparel were down 18.1% for the month, for a total of 8.95 billion SME.

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Allbirds Open Sources Net-zero Shoe Technology
Textile Technology Source (ATA Publication) | September 11, 2023

U.S. footwear brand Allbirds is making available the technology behind what it says is the world’s first net-zero shoe. The company has open sourced its toolkit for the M0.0NSHOT shoe by publishing it on its website. The shoe is currently a prototype due for commercial launch next spring. The toolkit includes sections on the shoe’s design, materials, packaging, manufacturing, transportation, end-of-life, carbon measurement, carbon sequestration and project partners.

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