Innovation, key topic at Apparel Sourcing Show 2019
Apparel Sourcing Show 2019 is an event organized by the Guatemalan Garments and Textiles Association (VESTEX). It opened its doors this year displaying important innovations focused on taking the industry into the future and showing to international visitors the capabilities of Guatemala and the Central American region to produce garments with high added-value.
Apparel Sourcing Show is a unique platform in Central America that allows all members of the industry’s value chain to meet international buyers and promote the integration of a regional supply chain.
This industry has endless possibilities and we need to make sure we take advantage of these opportunities to generate higher development in Guatemala. The textile industry is one of the few that face nowadays steady growth, mainly because of our large amount of exports, with a large amount of these textiles produced in other Central American countries. Our industry is generating around 40,000 jobs in other countries of the region; said Mr. Alejandro Ceballos, president of VESTEX’s Directory Board.
This international event took place on May 14-16, 2019 in Guatemala City at the Grand Tikal Futura Hotel.
One of the main objectives of this event was to showcase the impact of this industry, which is why this year we added and exhibition area with a representation of how the value chain is integrated. This exhibition displayed the entire garment-making process through artistic expressions made with industry materials (cotton, thread, textiles and even PET and plastic materials).
Apparel Sourcing Show gives us a unique opportunity to promote a new vision that could give immediate results to generate more formal employment. Some years ago, Guatemala was only recognized for its sewing capabilities. Nowadays, we produce threads, synthetic and cotton fibers, cut and make entire high-fashion garments. The Guatemalan garments industry has also started strong efforts to innovate and establish a high-level value chain, with first-class designs and processes that make Guatemalan garments recognized globally and fulfills the highest standards. This has made garments our top product exported globally, said Mrs. Connie de Paiz, AGEXPORT’s President.
Guatemala needs to continue promoting the integration of a strong value chain in order to take advantage of the opportunities in global markets, mainly in those with the largest growth rates currently, such as the United States.
One of the innovations of this year’s edition of Apparel Sourcing Show was the “T-shirt Lab”, where companies learned about digital printing technologies applied directly into clothing. This technology is key for Guatemala, as companies will be able to give higher value to their garments, thanks to an alliance with the Cotton Council, Disieri, Epson and Moda Pais.
Previously, digital printing was only possible on synthetic fibers. The fact that we can give this higher value directly to cotton garments gives us enormous opportunities, which is why we started this “T-shirt Lab” to combine fashion with technology. This year, we displayed the designs made by eight Guatemalan fashion designers on a fashion runway; remarked. Mr. Ceballos.
The event’s exhibition floor had 200 stands with companies from the entire supply chain: from fiber producers to finishing companies. Also textile-makers, packaging companies, shipping lines, providers of technology and machinery, among others. The exhibition floor also had different suppliers of raw materials that allow textile firms to elaborate sophisticated clothing with high added value.
Companies on the exhibition floor came not only from Guatemala but also from countries like El Salvador, Colombia, the United States, Canada, China, South Korea, Brazil, Spain, India, Panama and Peru. This year’s event also had the participation of companies from Taiwan, which displayed “smart fiber” innovations.
- For more information, please visit www.apparelexpo.com
- The garments and textile industry has faced an important developed in Guatemala. Through the years it has become a dynamic, flexible and competitive industry. It is nowadays the main exporting product for Guatemala. On 2018, it represented more than USD1.68 billion in exports, with a growth rate of 9.3% compared to 2017. On the first months of 2019, the growth rate continues steadily with the one experienced on 2018.