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Sustainability takes centre stage in China ahead of Intertextile Apparel’s Autumn Edition

Published: July 27, 2021
Author: Manali bhanushali
Sustainable fashion is a movement gaining considerable traction in China’s market. And at Intertextile Apparel’s Spring Edition earlier this year, sustainability was a key theme identified across the fair’s halls, with buyers flocking to find the latest eco-conscious products in high-demand among Chinese consumers. This sets the tone for what to expect at the upcoming Autumn Edition, running from 25 – 27 August, with the fair’s All About Sustainability zone hosting a range of exhibitors displaying the latest innovations in sustainability and eco-friendly fabrics and accessories, also to be found across all halls.

According to a study published by the R.I.S.E. Sustainable Fashion Lab in October 2020, Chinese consumers have a sense of ‘moral anxiety’ and fear that their purchases and consumption could have an adverse impact on aggravating environmental issues. Around 85% of consumers surveyed said they will not purchase from brands with a negative environmental image, demonstrating the clear changing commitments among Chinese consumers which has been observed at Intertextile Apparel fairs.

Exhibitors at the Spring 2021 Edition identified sustainability as a clear driving force and future direction for China’s textile market. Participating at the Japan Pavilion, Mr Yonghui Zheng, Manager of Shanghai IRIS Garment Accessories Co Ltd explained: “Our main products are made with recyclable and eco-friendly materials, for example resin materials and shells from South America. These products meet the biggest sourcing needs for China and the whole world. The brands in China are trying to become more eco-friendly, slowly this will turn into a reality and the demand will become greater and greater.”

Echoing this sentiment, Mr Heling Mo, Fibers Sales Dept Manager of Asahi Kasei Advance (Shanghai) Co Ltd commented: “As a Japanese company, we believe that China is the most anticipated market for the future. With the improvement of living standards in China, many consumers have a higher pursuit of comfort. We believe that this area has great potential for development – comfort and environmental protection will be an ongoing trend. As the number of upper class people in China gradually increases, we hope to introduce them to our more comfortable and environmentally friendly products, and this will be an area of revenue growth for us.”

Meanwhile, at the fair’s fringe programme, sessions on sustainability proved more popular than ever with speakers identifying shifts in consumer behaviour: “This time when visiting the fair, along with the previous few times, I clearly feel that the booths at Intertextile have become more and more green, which is great! When the pandemic first broke out, everyone was speculating whether there would be retaliatory consumption afterwards, but this did not happen. Consumers are becoming more rational about this. After the pandemic, this may become the new normal and people will reflect more on their relationship with society, which is a very obvious trend for the promotion of sustainable fashion,” said Ms Karen DuDirector of Sustainable Fashion, Impact Hub Shanghai & Managing Director of R.I.S.E. Sustainable Fashion Lab.

Many visitors at March’s show also explained how their sourcing goals align with the sustainability movement. At the fair’s new Hybrid Showcase display area, where overseas exhibitors sent their products to be displayed onsite for visitors to touch and feel, Ms May Wu, Fabric Purchaser at CPAX Ltd said: “I discovered a high-quality fibre supplier, Sateri. I’m very interested in their sustainable and environmentally friendly Lyocell and EcoCosy fabrics. As the textile industry is currently paying more attention to regenerated, natural, eco-friendly and protective products, I also observed that more suppliers are beginning to invest in sustainable products. I think these trends are bound to be the future direction of China’s market and the global industry.”

Eco-friendly exhibitors to look out for this autumn

From recycled and organic fabrics to testing and certification solutions, fairgoers can find a comprehensive range of sustainably-focused exhibitors at August’s Intertextile Shanghai Apparel Fabrics – Autumn Edition. Some highlighted exhibitors to look out for include:

  •          Bossa Ticaret Ve Sanayi Isletmeleri TAS, Turkey (Booth: 7.2-E41): offering a wide range of products including recycled cotton, recycled PET, organic cotton, natural fibres and more, Bossa is developing a zero waste life cycle to close the loop. For its R-PET project Bossa produced 100% high quality recycled denim, using r-PET and recycled cotton fibres.
  •         NILIT Ltd, Israel (Booth: 1.1-E77): NILIT® is a leading global producer of premium, sustainable Nylon 6.6 fashion and performance fibres. Sensil® is NILIT’s sustainable premium Nylon 6.6 brand for apparel. Crafted by masters of precision, it is the new standard of quality for intimate apparel, legwear, active wear, denim, outdoor wear and more.
  •          tide ocean SA, Switzerland (Hall 2.1): #tide ocean SA transforms plastic from the ocean, coastlines and uncontrolled landfills in Southeast Asia into quality products. Damaged plastic is repaired and upcycled into high-quality granules and yarns for new sustainable products. In its first couple of months, #tide processed more than 150 tonnes of ocean plastics.
  •         Yagi & Company (HK) Ltd, Hong Kong (Booth: 2.1-C27): looking to develop an environmentally friendly raw material, Yagi released a recycled yarn product named Recycolor. Cut waste and scraps of material generated during the apparel-production process are collected, sorted by colour and the recovered fibres reborn as yarn. Recycolor enables many different colours of cotton fabrics to be recycled. Moreover, both water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions are reduced because no dyeing process is required.

More sustainable suppliers can be found in the All About Sustainability zone and across other halls at the fair. View the full exhibitor list here.

Read more about how sustainability is being perceived in China here.

Since 2019, Messe Frankfurt has been working with the Conscious Fashion Campaign and United Nations Office for Partnerships as part of the Texpertise Network and supports the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The goals will be presented gradually at global textile events in order to highlight the most pressing challenges facing the textile and fashion industry worldwide.

Intertextile Shanghai Apparel Fabrics – Autumn Edition will take place alongside Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles – Autumn Edition, Yarn Expo Autumn, CHIC and PH Value, from 25 – 27 August 2021 at the National Exhibition and Convention Center (Shanghai).

The fair is organised by Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd; the Sub-Council of Textile Industry, CCPIT; and the China Textile Information Center. For more details, please visit: To find out more about all Messe Frankfurt textile fairs worldwide, please visit:

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