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Industry News | 3/6/24

SPESA MEMBER SPOTLIGHT | How To Choose the Right ERP Software Solution
Aptean (Sponsored Content) | March 6, 2024

Struggling with supply chain blind spots, operational bottlenecks, and compliance headaches in fashion manufacturing? Aptean’s exclusive ERP Buyer's Guide dives deep into solutions that can reshape your approach and help fashion and apparel manufacturers. Click the link to learn more and download the ERP Buyer’s Guide now to transform challenges into opportunities.

Congress’ Americas Act Earmarks $14 Billion for Circular Fashion
Sourcing Journal | March 6, 2024

A highly-anticipated bipartisan bill aimed at harnessing economic potential across North, Central, and South America was introduced in the U.S. Senate today. The sweeping legislation looks to facilitate the onshoring and reshoring of critical industries while supporting free-trade agreement expansion. It includes billions in incentives for circular fashion, as well as provisions related to enforcement of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) and de minimis reform. We will continue to monitor the progress of this legislation.

Denim Expert Aims for 100% Wastewater Recycling with New Effluent Treatment Plant
Fashion United | March 6, 2024

Denim manufacturer and exporter Denim Expert Ltd. has announced a new, state-of-the-art effluent treatment plant at its factory in Chittagong, Bangladesh, to achieve its goal of 100% wastewater recycling and zero discharge of hazardous chemicals.

H&M Embraces New Venture To Buy 50% of Its Recycled Polyester Supplies
Fashion United | March 6, 2024

H&M Group, in collaboration with Vargas Holding, has unveiled Syre, a groundbreaking venture supported by TPG Rise Climate. The primary objective is to scale up textile-to-textile recycled polyester and foster sustainability within the textile sector. H&M Group has committed a substantial USD$600 million over seven years through an offtake agreement with Syre, securing a significant portion of its long-term recycled polyester needs. Meanwhile, H&M Group is also tapping into a disruptive new technology testing a CO2-driven sustainable dyeing solution.

Deal on EU Ban on Products Made with Forced Labor
Press Release | March 5, 2024

Yesterday, negotiators from the European Parliament and Council reached a provisional agreement on new rules that ban products made with forced labor from the EU market.

The new regulation would create a framework for enforcing this ban, including through investigations, new IT solutions, and cooperation with other authorities and countries. Additional industry coverage is available here. This news comes right on the tail of recent reports that similar legislation had been blocked by opposing EU countries.

Renewed Iteration of Higg BRM Unveiled
Fashion United | March 5, 2024

In February, the Sustainable Apparel Coalition rebranded as Cascale. Just a week later, the organization has unveiled the latest version of its Higg Brand and Retail Module (BRM) as part of its evolving Higg Index suite of tools. The update includes a more refined guidance, new social metrics, and a framework “designed to keep pace with rapidly evolving sustainability landscapes.”

UKFT and HMPPS Collaborate To Run Textile Production Workshops in 50 UK Prisons
Apparel Resources | March 5, 2024

With a current presence in 50 UK prisons through 73 textile workshops, a joint initiative by the UK Fashion and Textile Association and Her Majesty’s Prison and Probations Service seeks to streamline sewing machinist training standards across its facilities. The overarching goal of the program is to illuminate career pathways within the UK fashion and textile manufacturing industry for participating prisoners, positioning the sector as a viable option for ex-offenders seeking reintegration opportunities.

Who Should Pay for Fashion’s Decarbonization Efforts?
Rivet | March 5, 2024

Based on interviews with apparel manufacturers and key stakeholders from a diverse range of countries and business types, a new report investigated what types of funding needs manufacturers have for decarbonization, the challenges they face and what type of funding models the sector should consider to address gaps between brands and suppliers on the willingness to pay for sustainability. 

Reducing Greenhouse Gas emissions through the scaling and adoption of innovative technologies will be a topic of discussion at the upcoming SPESA Advancements in Manufacturing Technologies Conference in Los Angeles.

Sri Lankan Apparel Manufacturers Make Traceability the Norm
Sourcing Journal | March 5, 2024

Sri Lanka’s apparel manufacturers have linked with Global Language of Business (GS1), the Asian Development Bank, and International Financial Reporting Standards to usher in an era focused on transparency and traceability. The entities announced that, going forward, all pieces of apparel coming out of Sri Lanka will have a QR code tag affixed to them. Scanning the QR code will show stakeholders information about the brand, the materials used for the product, care instructions, guidelines for end of life, supply chain traceability, and more. Keep an eye out, we expect to see more initiatives like this coming soon.

Techtextil & Texprocess Hold Strong Appeal for Young People, Students
Fibre2Fashion | March 5, 2024

The textile sector has much to offer bright young people. Currently undergoing a process of transformation, the sector is characterized by a variety of creative opportunities – from digitalisation and automation to future-oriented sustainability concepts.” We love this prompt for the upcoming Techtextil and Texprocess shows in Frankfurt.

Victoria Is the Prime Hub for Textile and Apparel Manufacturing in Australia, as per a New Report
Apparel Resources | March 5, 2024

Anyone planning for a move down under? A new report from the Australian Fashion Council recognized the state of Victoria for having the most comprehensive textile and apparel supply chain in the country. The report estimates the economic value of Victoria’s textile, clothing, and footwear manufacturing industry at USD$960 million, providing employment for 10,300 individuals. It emphasized Victoria’s potential to lead Australia’s transition towards a sustainable economy due to its well-established clothing ecosystem encompassing fiber production, manufacturing, retail, wholesale, repair, and second-hand retail.

Princess Kako Marvels at Titanium Sewing Needle: A Breakthrough in Crafting Ease
BNN Breaking | March 5, 2024

Just for fun. During a recent exhibition, Princess Kako of Japan was introduced to a series of innovative inventions, each designed to simplify and enhance daily living. Among these, a titanium sewing needle stood out, not only for its practical application but also for its aesthetic appeal. This needle, known for its striking iridescent color, promises to revolutionize the world of sewing by addressing common frustrations faced by crafters worldwide.

France Mulls Penalties To Rein In Ultra-Fast Fashion Brands
Reuters | March 4, 2024

Fashion brands with ultra-fast product turnover such as China's Shein should be subject to penalties of up to 50% of their garments' selling price to offset their environmental impact, French ruling-majority MPs have proposed in a new bill.

SpaceX Is Hiring More than Engineers. The Company Is Paying up to $90,000 To Sew Space Suits
Florida Today | March 4, 2024

Sure, the space exploration company hires plenty of engineers and other STEM-related fields, but billionaire Elon Musk’s company also is looking for some employees outside the science world. A job listing for a "space suit sewer" seeks candidates to create space suits and crew equipment designed with three main goals: to be comfortable, functional, and have an innovative design.

Baltimore’s Fashion Innovation Hub Boosts Sewing and Start-ups
Sourcing Journal | March 4, 2024

As U.S. cities like Detroit and St. Louis are building ecosystems for local production, a Baltimore contingent has been quietly laying the groundwork to strengthen its sewn products industry. The aim is to revive the city’s needle trade and to advance design innovation as well as area businesses through Sew Bromo, an organization that was started in 2021 by Stacy Stube.

Foot Locker Footwear Studio Debuts at PLC Detroit
Fibre2Fashion | March 4, 2024

PLC Detroit announced the opening of the Foot Locker Footwear Creation Stu/deo in Detroit, offering a dynamic environment for aspiring footwear designers. The new design stu/deo will offer a level of access and opportunity that is unmatched in the design field through shoemaking workshops, sample making services, small footwear production capabilities, and more. PLC Detroit is the only design-focused Historically Black College or University (HBCU).

Spanx Pushes into Apparel with First-Ever Global Campaign
Marketing Dive | March 4, 2024

Though widely known for its intimates and shapewear, Spanx is shining a spotlight on its wide range of apparel offerings that include denim, leggings, and activewear. Launched at the start of Women’s History Month on March 1, the campaign flexes the brand’s expansive clothing collection by nodding to the ways it can cater to the multi-hyphenate lifestyles of women. The effort marks the first time Spanx has spent money on upper-funnel advertising, per release details.

Northshore Apparel Factory Launch in Savelugu To Create 1,600 Jobs, Boost Northern Ghana's Economy
BNN Breaking | March 4, 2024

The inauguration of a large-scale apparel manufacturing facility in Savelugu, Ghana, promises to create more than 1,600 jobs for women and youth in the region. This groundbreaking project, a collaborative effort between Northshore Apparel Ghana Ltd, the German government through its donor agency Facility Investment for Employment (IFE), and the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) in Ghana, aims to not only provide employment but also to stimulate industrial growth and reduce developmental disparities within the country.

SPESA MEMBER SPOTLIGHT | YKK Achieves Top Rating for Climate Action: Named to CDP’s Prestigious ‘A List’
Textile World | March 2, 2024

SPESA member YKK Corp. announced that it has achieved for the first time the highest “A List” rating in the 2023 Climate Change survey conducted by the global environmental disclosure nonprofit, CDP. CDP scored over 21,000 companies based on information reported through its climate change, deforestation, and water security questionnaires. Only 2% of these companies have been named on its 2023 A List for disclosing actionable, high quality environmental data.

U.S. Apparel Manufacturing Grows Amidst Industry Decline and Layoffs
Apparel Resources | March 2, 2024

In February, the U.S. manufacturing sector experienced a decline, marked by a decrease in factory employment to a seven-month low due to layoffs. However, there were indications that the industry was poised for a potential resurgence. Notably, eight manufacturing sectors, including apparel, leather, and related products, reported growth during the month.

China’s Apparel Suppliers Diversify To Keep Sourcing Major Status
Just Style | March 1, 2024

As the world’s apparel manufacturers explore sourcing options outside of China, Chinese suppliers are also reducing their own trade risks by opening facilities overseas.

The North Face Trials Biodegradable Polyester Alternative
Sourcing Journal | March 1, 2024

The North Face has teamed up with a group from the U.S. Department of Energy to find a solution to prevent the shedding of microplastics from clothing. The Bio-Optimized Technologies to Keep Thermoplastics out of Landfills and the Environment (Bottle) consortium is researching polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) as a nontoxic and biodegradable alternative to traditional petroleum-derived polyester.

Eastman and Patagonia Join Forces To Tackle Global Textile Waste Crisis
Press Release | February 27, 2024

The outdoor apparel company teamed up with Eastman to recycle 8,000 pounds of pre- and post-consumer clothing waste, which Eastman processed through its molecular recycling technology. The process involves breaking down Patagonia’s unusable apparel into molecular building blocks that Eastman can use to make new fibers.

SPESA MEMBER SPOTLIGHT | Upskilling for the Future of Work: Bridging the Gender Gap in Garment Sector Automation
Press Release | February 26, 2024

VF Foundation (the philanthropic arm of VF Corporation) has expanded its partnership with SPESA member Shimmy Technologies to upskill ready-made-garment workers in Bangladesh. Following a successful pilot program, The VF Foundation announced Shimmy as a 2024 grantee to expand the upskilling of 500 more workers through mobile phone-based training and an additional 800 within physical training centers.

Can We Bring Back Manufacturing to the U.S.?
The Boston Globe | February 25, 2024

The Boston Globe touches base with contributor Rachel Slade on her new book “Making It in America: The Almost Impossible Quest to Manufacture in the U.S.A. (And How It Got That Way).” The book chronicles the rebirth of manufacturing through American Roots, a Westbrook, Maine, maker of sweatshirts.

How J.Crew Is Recycling Swimwear into New Textile Fibers
Vogue Business | February 23, 2024

J.Crew is partnering with recycling tech and reverse logistics platform SuperCircle to offer a swimwear takeback program named Second-Life Swim. The program encourages customers to return swimwear from any brand to J.Crew and collect a $5 credit towards the purchase of a new J.Crew swimwear piece. Through the partnership, 40% of J.Crew’s current assortment can be textile-to-textile recycled. The garments rated not fit for F2F recycling are being fed through SuperCircle’s open-loop recycling feeds for other product lines such as compression or insulation, extending the life for two years or more.

Lululemon Advances Circular Fashion with Recycled Nylon Product
Fashion Dive | February 23, 2024

The activewear brand partnered with Samsara Eco to introduce an enzymatically recycled nylon 6,6 product in what the companies say is a milestone in textile recycling.

SPESA MEMBER SPOTLIGHT | Ensuring Social Compliance in Fashion Manufacturing
CGS, Inc. | February 21, 2024

A recent blog post by SPESA Board member Daniella Ambrogi tackles what fashion companies can do to improve social compliance across their supply chains (and why they should). Moreover, the post highlights the ability of CGS, Inc.’s BlueCherry Shop Floor Control solution to increase productivity and efficiency, reduce costs, speed production, monitor performance, empower workers, improve quality, and more.

Epson Recycles Fabrics with Dry Fiber Technology
Textilegence | February 21, 2024

Global technology specialist Epson and Hong Kong Research Institute of Textile and Apparel Limited (HKRITA) have signed a joint development agreement to create an innovative dry fiber recycling solution. Through this collaboration, textile products that are difficult to recycle will be recycled with special “Dry Fiber Technology” to extend their lifespan.

Challenges, Opportunities & Best Practices in Sewn Products
Textile World | February 13, 2024

Textile World interviewed SPESA President Michael McDonald, asking about the association’s value proposition and the upcoming Advancements in Manufacturing Technologies Conference.

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