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Apparel manufacturing - a knowledge-based industry

Jun '07
At a recent economic summit in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Prasanna Hettiarachchi, General Manager of MAS Holdings, discussed how the apparel industry in the country needs to transform itself, from mere production to a knowledge based industry.

This industry stems from a very basic fundamental need that we all have, clothing. It has today moved from that very fundamental and basic need to become a much more complex purchase decision.

It was earlier just 'something to wear' but today it has global consumers and global markets have evolved.

The global consumer is able to exercise choice and his and her wants, requirements are taking shape in an emerging global environment and what is this global purchasing decision that has evolved, how has it become really complex? To highlight these I like to point out a couple of examples.

Levis recently launched 100% organic cotton jeans. Where they say the cotton is organic the button on the waste band is organic because it is made out of a coconut shell, the label is from recycled card board, the dye is from natural compounds and no metal rivets are involved in the whole product.

Now this is because of an emerging trend where there is concern for the planet, concern for sustainability of our environment, which is becoming fashionable, and the need of global consumers and the global market.

So this has actually required businesses, vendors, service providers etc to adapt; to align themselves to the global marketing requirements.

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