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The International Federation of Knitting Technologists (IFKT) will be held in Turkey from September 25 to 26, 2014. IFKT 2014 will take place simultaneously with the International Congress on Healthcare and Medical Textiles. IFKT was founded in 1956. It aims to promote the interests of the knitting industry. It has national sections in Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Korea, Mongolia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovenia and Switzerland, Turkey and Ukraine.

IFKT is the center of interest for researchers from different knitting areas where they can discuss and share knowledge and also provide a platform for further conceptual development on all symposium topics. The conference will cover areas like new fibers and materials innovation in knitting technology and knitting machines, technical textiles, functional knitted materials, comfort and wellbeing simulation and modeling fashion in knitting and clothing, finishing treatments of the knitted fabrics, quality and testing in knitting marketing, and management in knitting education in knitting.

The global carbon black market for textile fibers is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.1 per cent from 2013 to 2019. The carbon black market for textile fibers has been bifurcated into four product segments: polyester, nylon, acrylic and others. Polyester is the largest product segment and accounted for over 55 per cent share of the global market in 2012. Based on end-users, the market is bifurcated into three segments: home textiles, apparels and others. The apparels segment is the most dominant product segment and accounted for around 54 per cent of the global market in 2012. The home textiles segment includes carpets and sheets. The others segment includes automotive and agricultural textiles.

Asia Pacific dominated the global demand for carbon black and accounted for 58.2 per cent of the global market in 2012. This trend is anticipated to continue during the forecast period. The decline in consumption of cotton has resulted in an increase in demand for synthetic fibers. This is one of the growth drivers for the carbon black market as carbon black is used mainly in the synthetic fibers industry. Other major factors driving demand for carbon black for textile fibers include high growth in the polyester fiber market.

Italy's textile trade has been pushed behind by rivals in recent years: high-tech, high-end competitors in countries such as Germany and the United States, and low-end producers in places like China, Bangladesh and Turkey. A central driver of the country's economic growth in the 20th century, Italian fabric manufacturers have been struggling to remain in business since globalization opened the sector to Asian competition at the end of the 1990s.


Though Italy’s fabric industry has improved productivity in recent years, it has not been able to compete on wages. It has led to fewer jobs, lower living standards and abandoned factories. In last two decades, the industry that transformed cotton into thread, or thread into curtains, sheets, towels and clothes has no jobs in hand.


Italy is the world's third-largest exporter of clothes and fabrics. But its market share has decreased to just 4 percent since 2000, while employment in textiles has fallen every year for 25 years. It is now around 60 per cent of what it was in 1990, down 370,000 jobs, according to employers' association Confindustria.

An ethical and organic apparel basics brand, Pact has unveiled one of the largest organic cotton Fair Trade Certified lines by a US apparel brand. The line features 78 different items across 19 product styles including the Fair Trade Certified baby clothes.


The Fair Trade Certified apparel line includes underwear, as well as leggings, camisoles, T-shirts, and long johns. Previously, it had launched a Fair Trade Certified women's T-shirt line exclusively at Whole Foods. This expanded line is now available at retailers across the US at Whole Foods, Amazon and


The apparel line is produced in a factory located in India that has been a leader in producing socially and environmentally responsible apparel. The line is certified by Control Union according to the standards maintained by Fair Trade USA. With every purchase of a Fair Trade Certified garment, Pact contributes a percentage of sales to a worker-controlled fund. Workers democratically vote on how to spend these funds which include a disaster relief for factory workers, a scholarship fund for workers' children, infrastructure improvements in their local communities, or a cash bonus.


Pact offers super soft organic cotton essentials that are ethically made and go easy on the environment. From Non-GMO organic cotton grown at farmer cooperatives, to sustainable manufacturing in Fair Trade factories, its fully transparent supply chain allows customers to not only feel good in Pact, but also feel good about where it came from.

During the last decade, the number of people working in California’s apparel and textile manufacturing industry has shrunk by 43 per cent as production of clothing and textiles has moved overseas. However, the industry is still a major contributor to California’s manufacturing economy. Nearly 80,000 people were employed in this sector in 2012, with 90 per cent of them working in Southern California.

The loss of durable manufacturing jobs in the early 1990s was largely a result of reductions in national defense spending. But the largest declines were in non-durable manufacturing, such as apparel, because of California’s high labor costs and proximity to Asian factories.

The state’s manufacturing sector accounts for only about 11 per cent of the goods and services produced in California. The service industry is the overwhelming winner, making up 70 per cent of all the state’s goods and services. There is aerospace, biochemical goods, semi-conductors and electronic components. Manufacturing output continued to climb while employment continues to fall. Te apparel industry can grow by producing more clothing that incorporates high-tech elements used in sportswear and athletic wear to monitor physical behavior, such as heart rate or blood pressure. The Los Angeles area continues to have the highest concentration of apparel workers in the United States.

Bangladesh's textile chemicals market is forecast to grow at a CAGR of around 7 per cent during 2014-19 period. Bangladesh continues to be a major textile exporting country after China and India. The textile chemicals market in Bangladesh benefits from large-scale exports of knitted and woven garments globally. Growing demand for knits and wovens in the US and EU has pushed up the overall consumption of textile chemicals in Bangladesh. The country is also exploring various other export markets, which is expected to further boost the demand for textile chemicals in Bangladesh over the forecast period.

Major factors that would boost textile chemicals market in Bangladesh include the country's growing textile industry, rising readymade garment exports to global markets, and growing demand for multi-functionality and specialty chemicals in the country. Leading textile brands manufacture their readymade garments in Bangladesh, which continues to benefit the market for high performance textile chemicals.

Textile chemicals are used for coloring textiles and fabrics, improving the quality of textiles, and providing desired properties to the textile during processing. These chemicals find widespread application during the processing of cotton, wool and synthetic fibers. 

Nicaragua fears the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will bring huge losses to its apparel sector, which accounts for 10 per cent of its GDP. This is because Vietnam, already the US' biggest garment supplier and a formidable competitor, could enter the 12-nation free-trade bloc without a yarn forward rule of origin. If this happens as part of negotiations to strike a landmark agreement, Chinese yarn and fabric suppliers could flood Vietnam and the US. Without this yarn-forward rule, Nicaragua fears the market will be flooded with Vietnamese clothing made from Chinese yarns and fabrics.

The prospect of a yarn forward rule is actually helping to increase textile investment in Vietnam, which would further shore up the country's competitiveness in the trade pact. Nicaragua benefits from a tariff preference level program that matches apparel exports made from fabrics and yarns from any country on a one-for-one basis with those that use certain US fabrics and yarns. 

Even if the US, which is leading the TPP talks, orchestrates a favorable deal, Nicaragua must rush to bolster foreign investment to raise output and move into higher-price export niches. The garment sector in the country employs 50 per cent of Nicaragua’s industrial workforce.

Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA), a state-funded trade and investment promotion organization operated by the Government of South Korea is planning to introduce a fashion fund to boost Korea-China apparel market. The aim is to encourage Korean companies set up manufacturing in Korea itself. While apparels bearing the ‘Made in Korea’ tag perform well in the global market, the number of textile and garment companies operating from Korea is declining since they are relocating manufacturing plants to China and Vietnam. 

The planned funds would help small and mid-sized companies in both the countries by amalgamating the expertise of Korean designers and Chinese garment manufacturers under the slogan ‘Made in Korea, Made with China’. KOTRA was established in 1962 as a national trade promotion organization. Since then, it has successfully facilitated Korea's rapid export-led economic development through various trade promotion activities such as overseas market surveys and business matchmaking.

Lorenzo Minelli is the new research and innovation director of Itema Lab. He replaces Giuseppe Casarotto, who started working in Itema in 1983 and has been leading advanced research and development projects for the weaving machinery manufacturer ever since.

A mechanical engineer Minelli joins Itema after having an established and successful career in a number of other innovation-minded multinational companies. He is a senior professional with a broad and diversified experience of managing projects in the area of complex industrial product development.

Itema is gearing up towards ITMA 2015, the biggest textile machinery exhibition which will be held in Milan next year. Itema Lab is one of the two R&D departments of the global weaving machine producer. It is tasked with developing the revolutionary breakthroughs that could lead to the loom of the future.

Itema also has another advanced research arm at the corporate headquarters working on continuously improving the existing weaving machines. The Italian privately-held multinational invests every year 5 to 6 per cent of its profits in R&D projects, more than any company in the industry. The company has just launched a brand new portfolio of air jet weaving machines at ITMA ASIA 2014 in Shanghai.

WWF and the IKEA have launched a new progress report on their involvement with the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI). This includes details of reduced use of chemical pesticides, chemical fertilisers and water along with improved earnings and social benefits for workers during 2013.

The availability of Better Cotton is increasing rapidly. It is hoped that production can be large enough to make it a mainstream global commodity before 2020. BCI has the ambitious aim of having Better Cotton make up 30 per cent of global cotton production by 2020. Only two per cent or 6,70,000 metric tons of the cotton lint produced globally in 2012 was Better Cotton.

BCI aims to transform cotton production worldwide by developing Better Cotton as a sustainable mainstream commodity. It works with a diverse range of stakeholders across the cotton supply chain to promote measurable and continuing improvements for the environment and farming communities.

WWF and IKEA are both founding members of BCI. In the cotton growing regions of India and Pakistan they are helping about 40,000 farmers to produce BCI cotton. By using this method, farmers’ earnings in India jumped 45 per cent compared to earnings from conventional cotton cultivation methods. And there are environmental benefits also like the use of lesser pesticides, less water and fewer fertilisers.

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