Apparel and textile industry hot issues
Comprehensive coverage of the apparel and textile industry's hottest issues through a compilation of news, analysis and comment.
6 December 2013
A combination of cold weather, promotions and price cuts saw millions of Americans shop for holiday gifts over the Thanksgiving weekend, kicking off the biggest selling period of the year. But while overall shopper numbers were up on last year, they're spending less, first figures suggest.
27 November 2013
Frustrated by slow progress towards the process of implementing fair living wages in the apparel supply chain, Swedish fashion retailer Hennes & Mauritz has decided to take matters into its own hands.
25 November 2013
Inspections are due to begin on at least 2,000 garment factories in Bangladesh to assess their structural integrity and fire and electrical safety after three separate groups agreed on common standards.
18 November 2013
The new minimum monthly wage for garment factory workers in Bangladesh will come into effect from 1 December this year - with the basic salary also set to rise by 5% each year.
11 November 2013
Plans to increase the minimum monthly wage for Bangladeshi garment workers by 77% have surprised labour leaders, who say discussions are still on-going, and factory owners, who have threatened to shut facilities in protest.
5 November 2013
A question mark continues to hang over Marks & Spencer's clothing performance after the retailer recorded its ninth consecutive quarterly decline in like-for-like general merchandise sales - despite the much-publicised re-launch of its autumn/winter women's wear ranges in September.
27 October 2013
In the week that marked six months since the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory building in Bangladesh, attention not surprisingly turned to ongoing efforts to improve garment worker safety – and the progress made so far.
16 October 2013
Export growth, increased foreign direct investments, and a strategic location may help emerging economies such as Sri Lanka to realise ambitious dreams to become regional production hubs.
11 October 2013
Less than six months after the Rana Plaza building collapsed killing 1,132 garment workers, Bangladesh has been rocked by the death of at least nine workers in a fire at a fabric mill. The tragedy has led to renewed calls for efforts to ensure factory safety - as well as questions on the extent to which audits need to be carried out further down the supply chain.
3 October 2013
Fast fashion companies are increasing their speed to market in response to demand for up-to-the-minute styles and trends at relatively low prices. In this month’s management briefing, just-style looks at the impact this is having on manufacturing and supply chains, production processes and proximity.
1 October 2013
International clothing and textile experts gathered near Shanghai last week to discuss solutions to China's twin challenges - dealing with less foreign demand, while managing rising production costs.
27 September 2013
Is Bangladesh losing its lustre with garment buyers as ongoing factory safety issues and unrest take their toll? The results of a new survey suggest this could be the case - yet it still remains the country of choice in a sector where price continues to hold sway when it comes to sourcing decisions.
19 September 2013
Global apparel and textile production has continued its year-on-year growth into the second quarter, with developing and emerging economies not surprisingly leading the way.
11 September 2013
For most industries, the availability of local raw materials is a decided advantage. Not so for the garment industry, where the relationship between a country's access to local fibre seems to stifle its ability to follow changes in customer demand.
9 September 2013
US textile and apparel imports continued to climb in July as retailers brought more merchandise into the country for the back-to-school season, with double-digit gains seen by both Bangladesh and Vietnam.
3 September 2013
As Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tagging has matured, the technology’s benefits for the apparel industry have become clear. Here, just-style looks at the latest innovations, opportunities for enhanced supply chain visibility and return on investment, increased accuracy in inventory and out-of-stock management, protection against theft and counterfeits, and the impact of omni-channel retailing.
29 August 2013
Troubled Australian surfwear brand Billabong is attempting to move beyond recent turbulence and onto its turnaround plans, but uncertainty still remains.
27 August 2013
Far from marking the beginning of the end for Bangladesh's garment export sector, recent tragedies have set the industry on a course that could see it evolve into a world-class player. And more than that, the changes underway could also redefine the apparel supply chain of the future.
15 August 2013
In its constant search for cheaper and cheaper production bases around the world, there are few places the apparel and textile industry has left untouched. But still the search goes on. From Africa to the Americas, Burma to Bangladesh, there seems to be a never-ending debate as to the next sourcing hotspot.
9 August 2013
In its drive to become more ethical and environmentally-friendly, the global fashion and textile industry is facing numerous challenges and opportunities. In this month’s management briefing, just-style looks at how apparel manufacturers are seeking sustainable options such as eco-labels and closed loop supply chains, while brands are acting to reduce their toxic chemical use.
30 July 2013
The use of mobile phones to monitor labour abuses in apparel-making countries is emerging as an accelerating trend this year, as apparel brands and retailers come under increasing pressure to be more accountable for their supplier base. Not only are two programmes being used by Marks & Spencer and Wal-Mart, but the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety plans to set up an anonymous worker hotline later this year.
29 July 2013
It looks set to be a mixed picture for apparel retailers this back-to-school season, as increased taxes and general economic worries continue to play on consumers' minds. But many will look to cut corners elsewhere and head to department stores to get the best deals this year.
22 July 2013
The Indian apparel industry has made progress with backward integration over the last five years, but needs to continue to reorganise to play to its strengths. If India does invest, it could rival China as clothing exporter.
18 July 2013
In theory, the decision to invest in a product lifecycle management (PLM) system shouldn't be a hard sell, with well-documented benefits including faster development cycles and greater control over costs and collaboration. Yet in reality, one of the biggest challenges facing apparel PLM projects still seems to be convincing stakeholders and shareholders that it is worth embarking on.
12 July 2013
Unveiling a new five-year plan to improve worker safety at the factories in Bangladesh that produce their clothing, North American brands and retailers were keen to stress the similarities between their own initiative and a separate scheme backed by 70 mainly European companies. That said, there are considerable differences too.
8 July 2013
The group of 70 retailers and brands that have signed up to the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh have agreed to inspect all of their supplier factories in the country within the next nine months.
1 July 2013
Croatia became the 28th member state of the European Union on 1 July 2013. The move offers greater access to EU customers for its textiles and clothing, as well as potential benefits from EU investment funds.
21 June 2013
Faster time-to-market, better quality and lower cost are the drivers behind the latest developments unveiled at last week's Texprocess and Techtextil trade fairs in Frankfurt, Germany. Here, just-style presents a snapshot of some of the innovations on show for apparel makers.
14 June 2013
Assessing the true cost of Lululemon’s recall of its hugely popular black Luon pants back in March could take some time yet.
7 June 2013
The Rana Plaza factory disaster should be a wake-up call for everyone involved in the apparel industry - and the catalyst for real, systematic change in Bangladesh -the US Senate hasbeen told during a special hearing.