Blog: Leonie BarrieNew just-style magazine launches

Leonie Barrie | 8 April 2019

We stepped into an exciting new chapter at just-style last week, with the launch of the first issue of just-style magazine. Each quarter this new, 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.

In this first edition we take a deep-dive into the challenge of Fixing Fast Fashion, including the findings of a new study that proposes three practical steps to “fix” the fast-fashion supply chain, some of the sustainability challenges facing the sector, advice from New Look’s head of buying on how to strengthen buyer-supplier relationships, and C&A Foundation’s vision for turning consumers into customers.

Other highlights include a look at some of the nimble new players shaking up the traditional retail model; and the risks and ramifications that arise for suppliers from the purchasing practices of apparel brands and retailers.

We’re confident the new just-style magazine will hit the spot by providing you with another way to navigate the key challenges and opportunities impacting the global apparel industry and its supply chain. Click here to take a look.

In other developments last week, latest figures for US apparel imports showed a surge in January as importers sought to mitigate the potential impact of unresolved trade talks between the US and China. Vietnam booked the largest growth, but rock-bottom prices at neighbouring giant China continue to win over US customers.

And Egypt is moving ahead with its Vision 2025 strategy to quadruple garment and textile exports, employ a further 1 million people, and attract US$17.5bn in investment – even though the double-digit growth needed to achieve the goals has yet to be reached.

Ahead of a decision by Bangladesh's supreme court on the future of the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in the country, an analysis of the government's factory remediation data shows a "shocking level of unreadiness" to take over the Accord's work. Among the findings: none of the 745 factories under the government's inspection programme has eliminated high risk safety hazards – all of which were identified between three and five years ago.

Separately, a EUR50m (US$56m) loan fund has been agreed with French financial institution Agence Francaise de Developpement (AFD) to provide the country's ready-made garment sector with medium-to-long-term finance for safety and environmental upgrades to factories.

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

And migrant workers in Jordanian garment factories that produce for international – especially US – brands now have union representation following elections last month.

Change is also afoot for denim mills, with the Kingpins trade show asking all exhibitors to meet or exceed standards in corporate social responsibility (CSR) and environment and chemical usage. Andrew Olah, event founder and CEO of textile company Olah Inc, tells just-style why the move is underway.

Dr Florian Heubrandner, vice president of global business management textiles, at Lenzing AG, agrees. With consumers becoming increasingly vigilant about the clothing they wear each day, there's an ongoing need for consumer education, as well as collaboration among all stakeholders to redefine the standard of transparency practices across the industry value chain, he says.

And the latest monthly round-up of updates to key free trade agreements and trade preference programmes involving the US, EU and Japan covers developments in March 2019.

Meanwhile, in other news, there has been a swathe of resignations at Superdry amid the return of co-founder Julian Dunkerton; Under Armour’s latest training apparel recycles the body's energy; thread maker Coats has now opened its three global Innovation Hubs; and Yesim Textile is to build a new garment factory in the east of Turkey.

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