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Editorial: Reshoring—a renaissance for the textile and apparel industries in advanced economies or a passing fad?
published in Issue 180, June 2016
Over 97% of the US apparel market is now supplied by imports – such has been the shift in sourcing from developed to developing countries as brands, retailers and traders have sought ever lower costs. This leaves less than 3% in the hands of US apparel makers. However, there is a momentum to bring apparel manufacturing back to the USA, and to other developed countries, and there are signs that "reshoring" initiatives are proving successful as costs escalate in China, minimum wages rise in other developing countries, and manufacturing close to the market becomes increasingly important with the growth of fast fashion and the need for quick response. In the UK, the Alliance Project aims to identify sectors and opportunities where textile and clothing manufacturing in the UK could be viable. Reshoring was a major topic at a symposium held at the third edition of Texprocess Americas – a trade fair for equipment and technology for the development, sourcing and production of sewn products held in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, during May 2016. Advocates of reshoring say that if just 10% of imports were replaced by US-made goods, this could lead to the creation of 300,000 US jobs. The task of rebuilding the US apparel industry is a daunting one. One of the biggest barriers is the level of labour costs in the USA. Another major problem is a shortage of skilled sewing machine operators and technicians. But USA-based factories are overcoming these problems by utilising automation and other technological developments to reduce the amount of labour required. Also, some reshored operations are using immigrant workers who already have the necessary skills and are willing to work in apparel factories. As well as offering quick response to changes in demand, USA-based factories are able to provide their domestic customers with easier monitoring of safety and environmental compliance than factories based overseas. In this report, Robin Anson discusses the moves which are being made to repatriate textile and clothing manufacturing to developed countries and the associated opportunities and limitations.
Six times a year, Textile Outlook International provides up to 200 pages of expert comment and analysis. A subscription provides an overview of the global fibre, textile and apparel industries. It is essential reading for senior executives in the fibre, textile and apparel industries and for anyone who is not involved in the industry, but needs to quickly gain an understanding of the key issues.
Reports in Textile Outlook International include:
country profiles providing a comprehensive guide to the textile and clothing industries in a range of countries and regions. The reports include an economic and political profile together with a comprehensive overview of the main issues, plus an outlook for the future.
company profiles giving you the opportunity to learn from strategies employed by others. Companies profiled recently include retailers, manufacturers, innovators and sourcing companies involved in textiles and apparel as well as smaller companies which illustrate the opportunities for firms which are interested in selected sourcing locations.
trends in world textile and apparel trade and production taking into account current issues facing the industry such as global fibre prices; competition from China and other low cost countries; the elimination of quotas and imposition of selective new ones; relocation of production operations; the impact of economic factors affecting trade; international trade agreements; trade promotion agreements (TPAs); and much more.
trends in EU and US imports of textiles and clothing providing comprehensive statistical data and analysis of the top ten supplying countries to the EU and US markets. These reports are updated each year and contain value and volume data as well as average prices and analyses of trends for up to 15 product categories.
innovations, technological developments, business development opportunities, individual sector analysis and political implications which affect players in the global fibre, textile and apparel industries. Some of the topics which have been covered in recent reports include: new innovations in the textile and clothing industry, such as environmentally friendly textiles, plant based fibres, and developments in textile colorants; innovations in textile machinery; and overviews of the European swimwear, hosiery and lingerie markets.
So whether you are involved in fibres, textiles or clothing in manufacturing, spinning, weaving, knitting, sewing, import/export, retailing or if you are in education or consultancy or investment or finance, a subscription to Textile Outlook International will tell you what you need to know about the key trends in the industry.
Textile Outlook International is available on subscription either in printed format only, or in printed and electronic format. If you choose the printed only option, you will receive 6 printed publications a year, containing a total of 30 reports plus editorials written by Robin Anson, our editorial director and in-house industry expert.
Electronic supplement If you choose the printed and electronic option, you will receive an extra service. You will still receive each issue in printed format, delivered to you by traditional post.
In addition, you will be able to download PDF files containing the same information but the PDF files will be available immediately on publication, so you dont have to wait for the printing and mailing. You also have all the benefits of electronic files: instant access even when you are away from the office; convenient storage in your PC or laptop; portability; electronic search facility; and copy/paste facility.