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Patola textiles under pressure from rising raw material prices
Aug '11
The more than ten centuries-old craft of weaving the famous Patola sari produced in Gujarat only, has now come under pressure from the increase in prices of silk yarn and other raw materials.

The rise in raw material prices has meant that weavers have had to increase their final product prices, which discourages consumers to buy Patola saris and other products or reduce their margins in order to keep consumer interest alive.

Hand-woven Patan Patolas are available in various forms like, saris, stoles, scarves and even hand kerchiefs.

Fibre2fashion spoke exclusively to Salvi Kanubhai Patolawala. Kanubhai and his family members have kept this unique 1,000 year-old art alive and are the lone flag bearers of this traditional art.

Mr Kanubhai Salvi said, “Increase in silk yarn prices along with increase in prices of gold & silver, used for real zari weaving and the tsunami in Japan and natural calamities in China resulted in lower silk output, which in turn, has brought in pressure on the prices of the Patola.

“As silk yarn prices go up, the profit margins of the craftsmen are reduced. So when they think of purchasing raw materials, they feel that if they wait for a little more time, the prices might come down.

“But even after waiting, the prices do not come down and they end up paying even higher prices for the same raw materials”, he informed.

“Secondly, labor costs are also increasing day by day due to the rising inflation and hence pressure increases due to that also. Besides, the raw materials prices of other ingredients that we use have also risen.

“However, we are not able to increase our final product prices in proportion to the rise in raw material prices, as then it will be difficult to sell the products in the market. On the other hand, if we do not increase the prices, our profits suffer.

“The production of silk and the prices of commodities like gold & silver cannot be controlled so we have to accept the situation and act accordingly”, he winded up by saying.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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