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UK clothing retailers support local production
03
Jan '12
In recent months, many UK clothing retailers have displayed an initiative to bring back manufacturing into the country and encouraging consumers to purchase UK-made products.

In the past 30-35 years, as costs of textile and clothing production began to rise, retailers started outsourcing their products from low-cost countries like China, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

NBrown which has brands like Jacamo, JD Williams and Simply Be in its portfolio, set the ball rolling when it invited potential suppliers in order to take its local production from the current one to five percent of overall sales.

The biggest advantage in localizing production that the retailers foresee is that they would be able to order smaller quantities. On the other hand, when outsourcing from other countries, they have to place orders for thousands of pieces.

The second big advantage emerges from shorter turnaround times, which when produced in UK is just 5-6 weeks, against 12-14 weeks when ordered from the Far-East

However, the biggest challenge the retailers face in sourcing from UK is the shortage of skilled hands, which if not addressed urgently, could completely derail plans to localize production.

Experts are of the opinion that, UK garment retailers should produce only high-end clothing under UK-made labels as it would be difficult to compete on costs in mass-produced clothing, outsourced from cheaper overseas countries.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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