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Innovations in Textile Technology and Fashion towards Circular Economy

By Dr K S Murthy, Pidilite Industries Ltd

Charles Darwin said, “It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the ones responsive to change.”

The textile industry and fashion industry are global and through online, on demand information, the SDC is ensuring these industries can be responsive to change. Embracing the concept of the ‘circular economy’ SDC EC in conjunction with Rachana Sansad School of Fashion and Textile Design, organised Innovations in Textile Technology and Fashion towards Circular Economy in Mumbai, attended by 200 delegates.

The circular economy targets optimum reuse of discarded products at the end of their lifecycle and the reuse of waste generated during the manufacture of products. The conference comprised four technical sessions with panel discussions, a technical paper on the circular economy and a fashion show presented by Rachana Sansad.

Mr V R Sai Ganesh, Hon. Chairman paid homage to Dr Ian Holme who passed away in May 2018 and was instrumental in starting the SDC Mumbai Chapter in India. The attendees observed a minutes’ silence in honour of Dr Holme.

Mr Ganesh welcomed the delegates and spoke about the waste generated in the textile world (37 kgs fabric consumed in North America per person and 5 kgs in developing countries like India) and 15% wastage when fabric is made into a garment. Fashion businesses like H&M came up with upscaling and recycling of denim jeans followed by others. Sustainability is the key and industries like dyes and chemicals and fashion need to minimise waste.

Dr Graham Clayton, CEO, SDC spoke on SDC – Global Vision. SDC is innovating through a virtual learning environment which can be found at colour.network that covers both the technical and design areas. He spoke about colour education for the future – from early years to employment – technology and design.

The Chief Guest, Mr Manish Mandhana, CEO, The Mandhana Retail Ventures Ltd is a commerce graduate with 25 years of entrepreneurial skills in the business of textiles and retail in 60 countries. Coming from textile manufacturing such as weaving, dyeing, processing and apparels, he learnt the tricks of the trade at a young age as his family is in the textile business. He created the Being Human clothing brand (2010), an iconic brand in India. He was awarded “Promising Entrepreneur of India.” A video showcased Being Human Clothing, including socio environmental aspects like CSR and sustainability.

Mr Mandhana complimented SDC for organising a knowledge platform for the industry to share ideas and experiences. He encouraged the delegates to take responsibility for products and processes. Manufacturing entails risk and hazards to the environment, he advised the delegates to respect the world we live in for the benefit of future generations. Any organisation is as good as its people and as the society and environment. It is important to make CSR and socio-environmental aspects part of the DNA of running a business.

Audits of his factory look at various aspects including the freedom to express views, safety standards and child labour. Waste and effluents are treated at source. Consumption of millions of gallons of water and chemicals in the manufacturing of a garment can pollute the environment. People are our strength so give them facilities to work so that they give more value to the company. They have built creches and clinics, provided subsidised meals and recreation facilities. Create a business with core values of taking care of society, the world and the planet.

Mr Mandhana concluded with a message on the concept of sustainability and everything that we do is a legacy for future generations.

Mr Felix A K Pinto is a Mechanical Engineer from the University of Mysore. He is sales director for X-rite India Private Ltd and he spoke on the Circular Economy: Innovations in Design and Supply Chain Management.

Why is colour important? Colour is a pivotal element of the design process. Integrating colour into the product design and brand strategy can help target the audience.

Communicate colour from design, inception and inspiration to manufacture down the supply chain. 80% of human experience is through the eyes. Colour increases brand recognition by 87%.

Industry 4.0 is moving in the direction of more sustainability. Material could be digitised for any product without physical samples thereby sustaining the economy and creating better value. The database is stored in the cloud which helps to reduce space, time, people, resources and colour processes approval that are involved in the lifecycle of the development process.

Mr Pinto concluded with the benefits of economic growth and higher productivity, generating more value and better paid jobs.

This was followed by several panel discussions.

Panel discussion I: Material, Legislation, Certifications and Sustainability – Way forward

  • Mr Rahul Bhajekar, Director, Standard Development and Quality Assurance, GOTS, Moderator
  • Dr Siva Rama Kumar Pariti, Global Technical Program Manager, Sustainable Textile Solutions
  • Mr Sasanka Sekhar Aich, Technocrat
  • Mr Prashant M Pote, Customer Relation Management, Blue Sign Technologies AG
  • Dr John Sequeira, General Manager, CHT (India) Lt.

 Panel Discussion II: Dyes and Chemicals Compliance – Way forward

  • Mr Prasad Pant, Director, South Asia, ZDHC Foundation, Moderator
  • Dr Naresh Tyagi, Chief Sustainability Officer, Aditya Birla Fashion & Retail Ltd
  • Dr Pankaj Desai, Head R&D, Colourtex Industries Ltd
  • Dr G V G Rao, President, Colors Division, Atul Limited; Managing Director, Rudolph Atul Chemicals Ltd
  • Mr Sanjay Harane, Vice President, Nagreeka Exports Ltd
  • Dr Yoram Benjamin, Technical Head, Jay Chemical Industries Ltd

 Panel Discussion III: Innovative Fashion – Towards a Circular Economy

  • Dr Ela Dedhia, Associate Professor and Head, College of Home Science, Nirmala Niketan, Moderator
  • Ms Archana Kochhar, Fashion Designer (Couturier)
  • Ms Krishna Mehta, Creative Director (Fashion Designer)
  • Ms Geeta Castelino, Educationist, Consultant
  • Mr Viral S Desai, CEO, Zenitex
  • Mr Puneet Dudeja, Sales Director – South Asia, WGSN

 Panel Discussion IV: Sustainable Business Strategies – Way Forward

  • Mr G V Aras, Director, ATE Private Ltd, Moderator
  • Vijay G Habbu, Senior Vice President, Reliance Industries Ltd
  • Mr Suketu N Shah, President and Business Head, Mafatlal Industries Ltd
  • Mr Sandeep Mehta, Textile Technocrat
  • Dr Parasu Veera Uppara, Vice President, United Phosphorous Ltd
  • Mr Amir Sheikh, Senior Consultant, Gherzi Consulting Engineers Private Ltd

With thanks to the sponsors: X-rite Pantone; Atul Rudolf Group; Zenitex; Bluesign; CHT; Colourtex; ATE; Archroma; Mirachem Industries; Indian Chemical Industries; Ramp Impex Private Ltd; Limon Process and Netflex.

For future events please visit the website.

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