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May 1, 2019

Top stories on just-style in April…

Top stories on just-style in April included the launch of the first issue of our new just-style magazine; an interview with Hugo Boss sustainability chief Andreas Streubig; a step-by-step look at the changes that have been made to improve worker and building safety within Bangladesh's ready-made garment industry since the Rana Plaza disaster; how Wrangler is raising the bar on sustainable denim; and the top ten supply chain risk predictions for 2019.

By Beth Wright

Top stories on just-style in April included the launch of the first issue of our new just-style magazine; an interview with Hugo Boss sustainability chief Andreas Streubig; a step-by-step look at the changes that have been made to improve worker and building safety within Bangladesh’s ready-made garment industry since the Rana Plaza disaster; how Wrangler is raising the bar on sustainable denim; and the top ten supply chain risk predictions for 2019.

 1. An exciting chapter begins with new just-style magazine

We’ve stepped into an exciting new chapter at just-style, with the launch of the first issue of our new just-style magazine. Each quarter this free digital publication will explore major topics that are top-of-mind for today’s apparel industry executives, plus regular sections on key market developments, sourcing strategy, new technologies and sustainability.

2. Joined-up approach needed for truly green supply chains – Hugo Boss sustainability chief

It’s been almost a year since Hugo Boss outlined its latest, annually revised set of ambitious sustainability targets and the German premium fashion brand continues to make progress towards its goals, including upping its use of more responsibly sourced cotton and reducing the number of potentially hazardous substances within its supply chain. Driving these efforts is Andreas Streubig, director of global sustainability, who also tells just-style of his concerns that despite efforts by individual companies, a concerted industry approach is still in its beginning when it comes to driving systematic change.

3. Debenhams to close 22 stores by 2020 under CVA plan

Debenhams has this morning (26 April) announced plans for a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) that would see the UK department store retailer shutter 22 locations by 2020.

4. US apparel imports slow in February amid Lunar New Year

February is historically the slowest month when it comes to US apparel imports, and this year was no exception – with a lull as retailers prepared to replenish stocks for the spring season and factories in Asia shut down for the Lunar New Year. One surprise, however, was India emerging at the head of the pack with a double-digit increase in shipments during the month. 

5. Rana Plaza six years on – A time for reflection

On the sixth anniversary of the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh, just-style has taken a step-by-step look at the changes that have been made to improve worker and building safety within the country’s ready-made garment industry.  

6. World Bank warns Cambodia growth could slow on trade benefit loss

Economic growth in Cambodia accelerated during 2018 – driven primarily by increased garment exports – but the World Bank has warned this momentum could slow as a result of heightened uncertainty over the loss of preferential access to the EU market under the Everything But Arms scheme.

7. How Wrangler is raising the bar on sustainable denim

US-based jeans brand Wrangler is making a major move to tackle sustainability with a new Made-in-USA denim collection that supports five US cotton-growing states – and takes the brand towards 100% sustainable cotton adoption by 2025.

8. How clothing brands’ business practices fuel factory abuses

Many fashion brands and retailers have codes of conducts that their suppliers should follow – yet one of the key areas that needs urgent reform is how they do business across their supply chains, a new report asserts.

9. Why USMCA is a balanced trade deal for textiles and apparel

A fully implemented and enforced US-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement (USMCA) would have a moderate but positive impact on US real gross domestic product and employment after six years, according to a recent report from the US International Trade Commission. But what are the implications for the textile and apparel sector? Dr Sheng Lu, associate professor in the Department of Fashion and Apparel Studies at the University of Delaware, takes a look.

10. H&M shares supplier details for every garment

Swedish apparel giant Hennes & Mauritz (H&M) has launched a new “transparency layer” both in-store and online that will see it list details such as production country, supplier and factory names and addresses for each of its garments.

11. Concern as Cambodia collective bargaining talks stall

Cambodian unions have written to global clothing firms Gap, Puma, Nike, Adidas, Uniqlo, Levi Strauss and VF Corp urging them to sign up to the ACT (Action, Collaboration, Transformation) living wage initiative and collectively link their international purchasing practices to the development of national industry-wide collective agreements.

12. US brands and importers back Mongolia trade bill

A new bill that would allow duty-free imports of products made in Mongolia using Mongolian cashmere was introduced in both the US House and the Senate last week – and has garnered support from apparel brands and importers.

13. Bold policies needed to mainstream sustainable fashion

With a “staggering” 73% of materials used for clothing sent to landfill or incinerated, and less than 1% of the fibres recycled, Ecopreneur, the European Sustainable Business Federation, is calling for decisive policy measures to create a framework to foster the move to a circular fashion economy.

14. 10 supply chain risk predictions for 2019

An array of potential threats could add costs and uncertainty supply chains in 2019 and beyond – including raw material shortages, more recalls and safety scares, and increasingly tough environmental regulations – a new report suggests.

15. Apparel groups again urge Cambodia to tackle labour issues

European and international business associations representing apparel, footwear and travel goods buyers have voiced concerns at the labour and human rights situation in Cambodia, noting the potential withdrawal of EU EBA benefits and US GSP benefits are “worrying developments” for companies that sourcing from the country.

16. Why Kingpins is setting new standards for the denim supply chain – Interview

Implementing an industry standard hasn’t been high on the list of priorities for most textile mills for the simple reason that no-one is asking for it. But this is all about to change as pressure mounts for increased sustainability, ethical production and transparency across the apparel supply chain. And a driving force is coming from an unlikely source – the denim trade show Kingpins – as Andrew Olah, event founder and CEO of textile company Olah Inc, explains.

17. What are the top threats to supply chains in 2019?

Brands shifting to new sourcing markets as a result of rising uncertainty over trade policies, mass migration, and cybersecurity have been identified among the biggest supply chain risks facing firms during 2019.

18. Re-shoring – Has its time finally arrived?

Cost and time are the two big factors influencing off-shore versus domestic sourcing decisions. But other issues also come into play, such as ethics, sustainability, and patriotism. Here industry consultant Malcolm Newbery weighs up the arguments for and against, with a look at two companies in the US and UK who are surviving and prospering from re-shoring.

19. Applying the latest digital technologies to fashion product development

There are a number of steps fashion industry executives can take to expedite design and development, stay at the forefront in an increasingly competitive landscape – and ultimately get a good night’s sleep. Andrew Dalziel, senior director, Industry Strategy, Infor, explains.

20. Toray targets athleisure with new Primeflex microfibre

Toray International America, the US arm of Japanese fibre and textile specialist Toray Industries, has added a new microfibre polyester to its Primeflex portfolio of stretch materials.

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