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WTiN: ITMA 2019 to focus on automation


WTiN: ITMA 2019 to focus on automation

ITMA, the world’s largest textile and garment machinery exhibition, will highlight smart garment technologies and automation at its next global event in 2019.

As a part of Industry 4.0, automation is set to revolutionise the integrated textile and garment manufacturing chain, and will help address the fashion and garment industry’s current short production cycles and concerns regarding sustainability, according to CEMATEX, the European Committee of Textile Machinery Manufacturers.

The ITMA exhibition, which is held every four years, is owned by CEMATEX, and Fritz Mayer, president of the association, says: “The garment making industry is labour intensive and associated with low productivity. Things are set to change.”

He adds: “Recently, there has been much publicity about ‘sewbots’, considered as a major breakthrough in garment automation. Manufacturers fast enough to ride the digital wave will find new opportunities and gain an edge over their competitors.”

Automation in the textile and garment industry is one of the major talking points in the industry at present and has been for a number of years now as Industry 4.0 advances and more companies decide to invest.

Vu Duc Giang, chairman of the Vietnam Textile and Apparel Association (VITAS), echoes the thoughts of CEMATEX. He says: “The garment industry is very competitive and production cycles are now even shorter. Therefore, we need to think out of the box and leverage on new technologies to help us to be more productive and efficient. Many innovative solutions are being introduced, from processes to materials.”

Innovation on display

In order to help garment manufacturers to exploit the technologies that will optimise manufacturing processes in the future, ITMA 2019 will showcase a vast array of innovative solutions. These exhibits will range from garment making machinery to other textile processing machinery, auxiliary machinery and accessories, all designed to maximise productivity.

According to ITMA, these will include:

• Software and systems for product planning, design and related automation technology for garment making
• Equipment for product development
• Machinery for shrinking, fusing, cutting preparation, cutting and related automation technology
• Machinery for sewing, quilting and linking
• Sewing supplies and consumables
• Machinery and equipment for product finishing
• Auxiliary machinery for the garment making industry

ITMA states that around 50% of exhibition space has already been booked, and applications have come in thick and fast since bookings started in May this year. The last edition of ITMA exhibition in Milan, Italy, in 2015, attracted 1,691 exhibitors from 46 countries, as well as 123,000 visitors from 147 countries.

A.E Roberts, managing director of ITMA Services, organiser of ITMA 2019, says of the show’s theme and provisional exhibits: “The digitisation of the fashion industry means that their suppliers will need to seamlessly integrate their design, material supply and production of the finished products.

“With integrated solutions, garment manufacturers will be able to respond well to fast and flexible production turnarounds, and cut costs by increasing productivity and reducing wastes.”

Roberts also spoke of the expected increase in collaboration in the textiles industry as Industry 4.0 progresses. He says: “There is a lot of ongoing dialogues among stakeholders in the fashion, textile and garment industry. ITMA can be a useful focal point for discussions on the entire manufacturing value chain so that concerns can be addressed in an integrated and meaningful way.”

ITMA 2019 will be held from 20-26 June at Fira de Barcelona, Gran Via. For more information on the event, visit


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