IMPRESSIONS from a Cross-section

Sector Pulse
Jim Desai
Jim Desai
Blaiva Fabricaa

Fashion industry likely to remain labour-intensive in coming years


Please throw some light on the Indian apparel industry. Where do you receive orders for job work & free on board (FOB)? What will be in trend for SS 2017? How would you describe the apparel job market?

The apparel industry is broadly divided into two segments: yarn & fibre and processed fabric, and apparel. India accounts for around 14 per cent of the world's production of textile fibres and yarns. It has the highest loom capacity with 63 per cent of the world's market share. It is the world's second largest exporter of textiles and clothing. Readymade garments form the core of the textiles and apparel exported from India. Cotton and manmade fibres are other major contributors in the textiles and apparel industry of India. Indian textiles and apparel have a history of fine craftsmanship and global appeal. Cotton, silk and denim from India are highly popular abroad, and with the upsurge in Indian design talent, Indian apparel too has found success in the fashion centres of the world. The Indian textiles and apparel industry is one of the largest in the world with an enormous raw material and manufacturing base. The industry is a significant contributor to the economy, both in terms of its domestic share as well as exports.
I have no complaints and no regrets of being in the textile industry. The graph is rising promisingly, and if we look back two years, our production was 2,000 garments per month, and now we produce 50,000 garments a month. This is our progress. We expect the numbers to multiply three times in the future.

We are into manufacturing of various ranges like menswear, womeswear, kidswear. At present, we have five brands divided among men, women and kids. We are supplying all over India. In the future, we plan to open stores of our own in major cities and countries.

We mainly receive orders from all major cities of India. Mostly, we are into FOB orders. Our sourcing depends and varies according to the product. We source cotton from Erode, Ichalkaranji, and Ahmedabad, and polyester and viscose from Surat. But we see high demand for men's shirts, women's westernwear, and kid's denim.

India is a very warm country. To protect the skin from the sun, people prefer to wear cotton clothes. It has been discovered that cotton and modal blends with eco-soft elastane fabric are used to make clothes which have a soft and delicate effect against the skin. A need to update shapewear sector is delivered, as fashion and function continue to collude. Elastane, delivered to garments combined with the active ingredients of high performance synthetics that enhance the wearability from a cool touch to moisture management, result in a 24/7 comfort (for wearers).

Garment production requires the support of workers that include fashion designers to design the article of clothing; patternmakers to draw and based on the designer's specifications; merchandisers and retail buyers to place the apparel in stores; and retail sales people to sell the finished garment to consumers. Many of the operations in apparel factories are difficult to automate because of the large variety of fabrics and the intricate cutting and sewing required of most fashions. So, the fashion industry is likely to remain labour-intensive in the coming years. Employment is projected to be strong for workers in retail apparel and accessory stores. Pressing machine operators, custom tailors, and workers whose skills can be used in laundries, and dry cleaners also will have strong opportunities. Workers who have knowledge of computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing will have the best employment prospects.

Published on: 11/11/2016

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of

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