Organisers of next year's Texprocess trade fair are hoping to help apparel retailers, brands and manufacturers navigate a range of industry challenges, including new sources of production and technologies to help improve productivity.

One of the highlights of the show, taking place in Frankfurt from 4-7 May 2015, will once again be the 'Source it' garment sourcing platform. This puts the spotlight on manufacturers, national associations and production regions, with a focus on Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Africa - and sustainability.

With the overall emphasis of Texprocess on manufacturing technologies such as sewing, joining, embroidering, cutting, and IT, adding a sourcing element to the line-up also provides an on-the-spot insight into some of the world's most important apparel sourcing regions. Visitors will be able find out about the local apparel industry, technical expertise, customs regulations, infrastructure and other sourcing issues.

"This combination of production companies and suppliers of machinery and technology is unique in Europe and future-oriented," confirms Olaf Schmidt, vice president of textiles & textile technologies at organizer Messe Frankfurt.

The 'Source it' platform will be centrally located near the "sewing and joining products" while, close by, the Texprocess Forum will also provide information about topical sourcing questions.

Great interest is already being shown in Texprocess by companies from South and East Europe, Central Asia and Africa, the organisers say. In 2013, over 50 companies and associations from 16 nations took part, including Bolivia, Kenya, Lithuania, Peru, Romania, Tunisia and Vietnam.

"At the same time, the production of fashion and garment is being shifted back to Europe," adds Schmidt, noting that companies from Egypt, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Poland, Portugal and Serbia were also represented.

"Countries from East and South Europe, and the Maghreb score through flexibility and short transport distances", he notes.

Responding to demand for environmentally friendly and socially responsible production in the garment sector, 'Source it' will also focus on social standards and testing and certification systems. "Sustainable production processes and social working conditions are developing within the industry into an increasingly important quality feature", says David Pircher of the Oeko-Tex Community in Zurich.

Contact Jennifer Mallm for information about exhibiting, or click here to find out more about 'Source it' and Texprocess.