Indian textile industry shifts to sustainable manufacturing
In India, the textile industry has a tradition of hundreds of years and is an important industry closely associated with not only various brands and factories but also agriculture. Western apparel brands have been actively expanding into India in recent years, and it is definitely the key industry in the country with $88 billion (approximately 9,530 billion yen) of export value. The Indian textile industry has also begun to work on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in earnest.
The start of a sustainable project called “SU.RE” has been announced at the country’s largest fashion show “Lakmé Fashion Week” held through August 22 to 26. The project has been launched by the Clothing Manufacturers Association of India (CMAI) and the IMG, the organizer of the show, and 16 major apparel brands from home and abroad attended. The combined industry value of these attended companies is around 30,000 crore rupees (about 450 billion yen).
The project aims to source/utilize a substantial portion of total consumption using sustainable raw materials and manufacturing processes by 2025. Companies understand the environmental impact of clothing production and procure certified raw materials that have a positive impact on the environment in a sustainable way. In addition, the efforts will be delivered to consumers and the media through SNS, promoting awareness-raising about SDGs.
Smriti Irani, the Union Minister for Textiles said “We are celebrating the 150th birth anniversary year of Mahatma Gandhi, and the concept is well expressing his famous word ‘Be the change you wish to see in the world,'” at a conference held during the show. Rahul Mehta, President of the CMAI, also said and committed to focus on sustainable efforts as “Working with the United Nations and the government, we want to change the fashion industry through the efforts and play a more responsible role in the future.” The world is paying attention to whether a huge market having influence both home and abroad will become a leader of SDGs.