Friday, 19 April 2019 05:36

Nonwoven Innovations to be Featured


By: Seshadri Ramkumar, Texas Tech University, USA


Nonwoven sector is a growth industry.


According to recent statistics, the global nonwoven industry has registered a growth of 6.9 percent. Speaking with this scribe yesterday, Brad Kalil, director of market research and statistics at the Cary-based INDA, Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry presented a growth picture for the sector. On production terms, United States accounts for 30% of global production at roll goods (fabric) stage accounting about US$13.7 billion in value. The value at roll goods stage globally will be about US$50 billion. When this scribe started promoting the nonwoven sector in India in 2006, the global nonwovens sector at roll goods level was valued at US$30 billion.


Nonwoven’s field lends itself to constant research and innovation. The Nonwovens Engineers and Technologists (NET) division of TAPPI will be showcasing new developments in the field in the forthcoming NETInc 2019 conference to be held this May in conjunction with the world’s leading paper conference (PaperCon 2019) in Indianapolis. Over 1000 participants have already registered for the PaperCon event. Larry Montague, president of TAPPI commented, “this year’s event will showcase best practices for now, and ideas for the future to drive the industry forward.”


The nonwoven conference will kick-off with keynote presentations. Andrew Aho, vice-president of new business development at Industrial Fabrics Association International will provide insights on the United States’ advanced textiles market and outlook for the future. Amit Kapoor, president and CEO of First Line Technology, will focus his talk on nonwovens commercialization pathways. First Line has transitioned nonwoven wipe, “FiberTect,” into defense markets.


With heightened awareness on plastic contamination, papers on bio-based oil absorbing nonwovens, antibacterial cotton products and developments in nanocellulose research will be presented. The conference has attracted good mix of papers from industry and academia on varied themes such as innovative filter media, foam finishing, biodegradable wool felts, etc.


Gaurav Pranami, vice president R & D at Imbed Biosciences, stated, “with 22 talks on the latest R&D in the field of nonwovens from industry and academia and national and international participants, NETInc 2019 is the conference to be.” More details about the event is at: 





Sustainability is a driving force for innovation, inter-connected textile processing, e-commerce and the next steps in the direction of Industry 4.0. With a broad spectrum of themes, Texprocess Forum (14 to 17 May 2019) is set to generate specialist impulses for textile processers, users and retailers. The complete programme is now available online.


Focus on sustainability and conference première in Frankfurt

Within the framework of the Texprocess Forum, Messe Frankfurt is bringing an offshoot of its Fashionsustain conference to Frankfurt on 14 May. Fashionsustain is part of Neonyt, an event hub specialising in sustainable fashion during the Berliner Fashion Week. The innovative conference format adds pioneering, sustainable textile innovations to the dialogue and uses synergistic effects in the sector to revolutionise processes and production flows. The superordinate question, ‘Is Sustainability the Key to Textile Innovations?’, will be discussed in round table sessions with key players, such as Lenzing, Perpetual Global and Procalçado S.A. A keynote lecture by Micke Magnusson, co-founder of the Swedish ‘We are Spindye’ start-up, will address the economic need for sustainable business models and give action impulses.

Subsequently, fibre manufacturer Lenzing, embroidery-machine manufacturer Santoni and shoe-component manufacturer Procalçado S.A. will present an innovation roadshow entitled ‘The Future of Eco-Conscious Footwear Manufacturing’. The roadshow is supported by the Texpertise Network of Messe Frankfurt. It illustrates sustainable shoe manufacturing and shows how a sustainability revolution in the fashion and textile industry can become reality today. The panel discussion will be chained by Marte Hentschel, founder of Sourcebook, the B2B network for the fashion industry.

Additional contributions about sustainability at Texprocess Forum will be given, inter alia, by gsm Global Sustainable Management GmbH on the recycling economy and its integration in the product-development process, textile manufacturer Vossen GmbH on vegan textiles and investment company Triple Tree on sustainable CSR management and audit solutions for complete transparency.


Impact 4.0: What comes after Industry 4.0?

Which changes triggered by Industry 4.0 are already part of the value chain? This is the main question of the thematic block organised by the VDMA Textile Care, Fabric and Leather Technologies association on the afternoon of 14 May and it will be discussed in two round-table sessions by Andreas Faath, VDMA Forum Industry 4.0, Dr Yves-Simon Gloy, Sächsisches Textilforschungsinstitut e.V., Dr Klaus Hecker, VDMA Organic and Printed Electronics Association and spokespeople from DESMA Shoe Machinery, Efka, Frankl und Kirchner and Expert Systemtechnik.

Digitalisation, product development, quality and environmental management

The subjects selected by DTB – Dialogue Textile Apparel – for the Texprocess Forum on 15 and 16 May spotlight those parts of the textile process chain most affected by digitalisation. With Holger Knapp, CEO of the Deutscher Fachverlag publishing company in the chair, Hans-Peter Hiemer of B4B Solutions will open proceedings with a keynote address on the digital transformation of the fashion business. This will be followed by a panel discussion entitled ‘Old hands, reckless young people – how to get the best from your team with 3D!’ with Professor Michael Ernst of Germany’s Niederrhein University, Dr Andreas Seidl of Human Solutions and other experts.

Thereafter, digital solutions for the fashion trade, e.g., digital showrooms and sales tools, will be the focal point of contributions by MobiMedia and Assyst GmbH. Lectra will discuss ways to fashion on demand, Sys-Pro will look at omni-channel solutions and Avalution GmbH at avatars in the digital development of apparel. In its contribution, the Hohenstein Testing Institute will consider whether virtual prototypes are also suitable for resale products while WKS Textilveredlungs GmbH will ask how quality assurance can go together with shorter lead times. On the Thursday of the fair, trade visitors can also look forward to contributions by PTC on product lifecycle management, by S.HE Business on e-commerce, by Spedition Barth & Co on automatic flat-goods stores, by EFIT e.V. on care labelling as a sign of quality and by zExur on qualitative colour measurement with multi-coloured textiles.


Individualisation and networked production

In the panel discussion organised by the World Textile Information Network (WTiN) on Friday, 17 May, Coloreel, the winner of the 2017 Texprocess Innovation Award, will introduce its revolutionary thread colouring technology, the German Institute for Textile and Fibre Research, Denkendorf, will speak about micro-factories in the textile industry, KSL will discuss sewing robots and WTiN will look at the influence of Amazon on investment, patents and the future.




 City of the Future” will be the key theme of Techtextil and Texprocess 2019 in Frankfurt am Main, the leading international trade fairs for technical textiles and nonwovens, and the processing of textile and flexible materials. Taking centre stage this time are the Netherlands: supported by Creative Holland, an initiative of the Dutch creative industries, a special presentation area will examine the role that textiles and textile composites can play in the future of cities and highlight an array of outstanding examples of urban textile innovations from the Netherlands.

“With “Urban Living – City of the Future” as the guiding theme, Techtextil and Texprocess are creating a shared interaction space that brings the application areas of Techtextil and Texprocess even closer together. “After embarking on a journey into outer space and into the future for the previous edition of Techtextil and Texprocess, with Urban Living we’re now coming back down to earth and into the here and now,” explains Olaf Schmidt, Vice President of Textiles & Textile Technologies at Messe Frankfurt. “And with the Dutch creative industries, we have been able to bring the ideal partner on board to do this: on the one hand, textiles are firmly anchored in the history and national DNA of the Netherlands. And on the other, the country is practically its own metropolitan region. The design orientation of the Dutch creative industries and the innovative, forward-looking and sustainable ingenuity that sets our neighbouring country apart are perfectly in line with the positioning of Techtextil and Texprocess.”

On an area of more than 500 m2 in the foyer of Hall 4.2, which is being shared by Techtextil and Texprocess for the first time, selected examples will be showing how textile innovations can already improve the way people live together in urban surroundings today. They will refer in particular to Techtextil’s spectrum of textile solutions that are of great relevance within the context of the urbanisation megatrend: architecture & construction, mobility, medicine and clothing. Selected innovations will be shown in a disruptive architectonic landscape. The inspiring exhibition area will be accompanied by a Material Gallery showing related best-practice solutions from exhibitors and the presentation area of the Techtextil student competition, Textile Structures for New Building.

Curated by the Stijlinstituut Amsterdam and structurally implemented by Dutch architect firm Refunc, “Urban Living – City of the Future” is proving the Netherlands’ expertise in providing answers to current, social and global challenges associated with the urbanisation megatrend. Awaiting the visitors are exhibits from, amongst others, the textile upcycling pioneers DenimX, research institutes like the Hyperloop team from Delft Technical University (TU Delft), contributions from the Next Nature Network as well as independent representatives of the Dutch creative scene like textile architect Samira Boon.

In a cross-sector, collaborative and innovative way, the representatives of the Dutch creative industries will be presenting pioneering solutions to global challenges. Along these lines, they will be showing how a future urban narrative can be told from a Dutch point of view that also reflects the country’s own identity: open and transparent, bold and original, inclusive, multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary.

In 2017, Techtextil and Texprocess attracted a total of 1,789 exhibitors from 66 countries and over 47,500 visitors from 114 countries.



Itema, the leading Italian manufacturer of best-in-class weaving machines, spare parts and integrated services, will exhibit at Techtextil in Frankfurt from May 14th to 17th (Hall 3.0, D05) and announces an important contribution for the sector.

In fact, Itema will seize the opportunity of the worldwide technical textiles flagship event to launch Itematech, the new company exclusively dedicated to producing weaving machines for the benefit of technical fabrics weavers.


With the aim of setting a new technological benchmark in technical textiles weaving by providing the market with the most comprehensive product offering to manufacture this highly specialized fabrics, Itema recently signed an agreement for the business lease of PTMT (formerly Panter), thus giving rise to Itematech.


Thanks to the strong know-how resulting from the merger of Itema and PTMT (formerly Panter) expertise and competences, Itematech will offer the widest range of best-in-class technological solutions to weave technical fabrics.


Technical fabrics manufacturers will now on find in Itematech a unique partner and technological reference point to meet and exceed all their needs when it comes to weaving the full range of technical applications.

The strategic alliance between the two historic weaving manufacturers leads to a complete and never-before-seen product portfolio, which ranges from negative and positive rapier, to air-jet and projectile weaving machines.


Technical fabrics industry differs significantly from standard fabrics production, since it involves highly innovative man-made raw materials and yarns and addresses end markets characterized by particular trends.

Always attentive to its Customers needs, Itema set up Itematech with the aim to provide to technical fabrics producers a partner capable of satisfying their specific requirements by offering the most complete weaving solutions range available in the market and the most skilled technical textiles team in the industry.


Discover more about Itematech and its unique technological offering by visiting Booth D05 in Hall 3.0 (joint booth with the Itema sole agent in Germany Elmatex).



Summer just got hotter as Spykar, India’s leading fashion denim brand launches a new range of athleisure denims, ‘GYMJNS’. This is slated to be the next evolution in denims as it offers a '4-way dynamic stretch' and 'ergonomic construction,’ making it the first-ever denim that can be worn for  work outs. Keeping in mind the demand for something cool, durable and versatile to match the fast-paced life of a millennial; this is a perfect denim for the gym and outside too!

By offering the user unrestricted freedom of movement, Spykar GYMJNS are designed for the outrageously stylish fitness enthusiast.  Available in 18 styles for men and women, this denim is ideal for those who like to pack their day with many exciting things including work-outs. These pair of Spykar GYMJNS are super comfortable and stretchy with a great fit and sporty styling. Matching the products features, the campaign tagline #BeExtraa communicates with the target audience which is millenials.


Sanjay Vakharia, CEO of Spykar Lifestyle said,

“Millennials are time-conscious, ambitious, and always on the go. They love sharing everything they do and want versatility & utility in what they use. With Spykar GYMJNS, they can now seamlessly move from active to leisure to fun, without having to change their outfit.”

These stylishly cool fashion denims with '4-Way Dynamic Stretch' and 'Ergonomic construction'  include styles with zippered pockets, drawcords, typography  side seams, elasticated waistbands, reflective tape details, sporty fits amongst other smart detailing. The range is now available pan-India across 250 stores and also online on



Nigeria’s Rivatex East Africa Ltd is planning to complete a $59-million upgrade by April end that will raise cotton consumption from 10,000 to 40,000 bales per day. Its projected capacity is 100,000 bales per day. The firm is targeting the US African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA) market through the export processing zone and those in other African nations. Rivatex secured a $29-million loan from the Indian Government last year and additional $29 million from the Nigerian Government to replace its obsolete machines. Managing Director Thomas Kipkurgat said the firm is targeting 40,000 cotton growers and more than 22 cotton-growing counties.

Over the years, the firm has manufactured materials for police uniforms and gowns for universities and won contracts for Kenya Power, the Geothermal Development Company and many hospitals, according to Kenyan media reports. Farmers are being sensitised to take advantage of the upgrade to provide Rivatex with raw material, Kipkurgat added. 



The talks with Hamleys could be a part of Reliance Industries new strategy of focusing its attention on its retail business. 

Reliance Retail could take control of the iconic British toy store chain Hamleys if talks between the two end up in a deal. According to a report in Moneycontrol, the Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Ltd is "aggressively pursuing the deal" with the Chinese-controlled toy store chain. The talks with Hamleys could be a part of Reliance Industries new strategy of focusing its attention on its retail business. RIL has reportedly asked its retail arm to pull out products like shoes, clothes and lifestyle products from rival online marketplaces Amazon and Flipkart as a precursor to the launch of its own business-to-consumer marketplace, as reported by The Economic Times. RIL chairman Mukesh Ambani unveiled the conglomerate’s plans for a “hybrid online-to-offline” venture in July 2018 that would take advantage of the synergies between Reliance JioInfocomm and Reliance Retail’s stores. 

According to the report in Money control, the due diligence is in advanced stage. 
Hamleys was bought by Chinese fashion retailer C. Banner for 100 million pounds in an all-cash deal in 2015. The Chinese retailer has been looking forward to exit the company since October last year, a Sky News report said.



Walmart aims to increase the use of recycled polyester fibre, setting a goal of using 50 per cent recycled content by 2025 and to source 100 per cent more sustainable cotton. Further, Walmart will also work towards prioritising sustainable chemistry, setting a goal to reduce the discharge of priority chemicals from the textile manufacturing process. By 2022, Walmart US stores will source apparel and home textile products only from suppliers working with textile mills that use the Sustainable Apparel Coalition’s Higg Index Facility Environmental Module (FEM) to measure and help improve environmental performance. At its recent sustainability milestone summit, Walmart announced that for the first time, checkout carousels at its US stores will include reusable bags that will be available to customers for purchase. The aim of this new campaign is to help reduce plastic waste and increase customer convenience by placing reusable bags in easy to find and highly frequented sections of its stores.

As part of the launch, Walmart is rolling out a new assortment of reusable bags that are made with post-consumer recycled content. The new reusable bag initiative will begin rolling out to stores next month and follows a recent announcement by Walmart on a series of plastic waste reduction goals that seek to advance the sustainability of the retailer’s private brand packaging by making it 100 per cent recyclable, reusable or industrially compostable by 2025. "To achieve our ambitious climate goals, we aim to expand and deepen that engagement. The progress to date shows how companies can contribute to climate action through practical actions all along the product supply chain. Ultimately, building sustainable supply chains requires collective action from everyone – not only our associates and suppliers, but customers, business in general, and civil society. We are excited to be part of the solution," Kathleen McLaughlin, senior vice president and chief sustainability officer for Walmart.



Expressing concern over the plan to terminate India's generalised system of preferences (GSP) status, 25 US trade associations have sent a letter to the US Trade Representative (USTR) urging it to extend talks to reach a mutually agreeable solution. They fear the step in the middle of the Indian elections will not achieve its intended goal of applying pressure for reform. The associations include the American Apparel and Footwear Association (AAFA), the American Association of Exporters and Importers (AAEI), the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA), the Association of Food Industries, the Coalition for GSP, the Coalition of New England Companies for Trade and the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA). The step is likely to exacerbate political differences over trade issues, trigger retaliatory actions by New Delhi and undermine the business climate for US companies trading with and engaged in business in India, the letter said. 

The action will have an adverse impact on many US workers who now depend on global value chains that use imports from India, according to a press release from AAFA. The step also seems to disregard the way in which this program helps lift hundreds of millions of people out of extreme poverty, as has been witnessed since its inception in 1974. The letter requested that any final revocation or suspension be deferred for at least 60 days to allow the new Indian Government to appoint officials to engage in bilateral negotiations.



There will be no shortage of cotton during the ongoing marketing season 2018-19 (that ends on September 30) despite an all-time low yield, the Confederation of Indian Textile Industry (CITI) has said. Based on the actual data collected from cotton growing areas, CITI has revised cotton crop estimate for the current season to 343 lakh bales of 170 kg each. “Drought in many cotton growing regions of Gujarat, a few regions of Maharashtra and a few areas in other cotton growing states has affected cotton yield,” CITI chairman Sanjay K Jain said in a media release. Explaining that there would be no shortage of cotton, Jain said, “Though we have a smaller crop size this year in comparison to last year, the cotton supply position is very comfortable with a big ending stock of 40 lakh bales. Thanks to a big opening stock, smaller exports and large imports, the production deficit is well covered. CCI has also started selling its stock, which will further increase liquidity in the cotton market.”

“CITI is fully confident that India will have no shortage of cotton in 2018-19 despite an all-time low yield,” he added. For the next season, Jain said the highly remunerative prices during the current season and the normal monsoon projection for the months ahead would induce Indian farmers to prefer to grow more cotton.


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