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Techtextil 2019

Day 4: Techtextil Show Preliminary Participation Figures Released

Combined Shows Attract more than 47,000 Visitors from 116 Countries.  Once again, the co-located Techtextil 2019 and Texprocess 2019 proved to be the major international platform for the global technical textiles industry. Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH, the organizer of the two trade fairs, released preliminary participation numbers immediately upon the conclusion of the 4-day event on May 17. Combined, there were a total of 1,818 exhibitors from 59 countries and 47,000 trade visitors from 116 countries. In comparison, the figures in 2017 were 1,789 exhibitors from 66 countries and 47,388 visitors from 114 countries. 

While a quick glance finds the 2017 and 2019 numbers about even, I think 2019 is a remarkable achievement given the challenges facing the global industry. I'd like to do a deeper dive into the demographics to see if we can determine where the show has gained participation and what holds back other markets this year. It will be interesting to compare, for example, the Chinese participation this time verse the 2017 participation since there is a slowdown in the country's economy and the increasing tariff dispute with the US, its largest export designation for technical textiles.


In Europe itself, many in the industry described the economy in a "pause" situation, citing issues such as the Brexit mess, the political situation in Turkey, and a slow-growth 1.5% GDP economy so far in 2019. The industry seems to be waiting for market clarity which may be provided with the upcoming European parliamentary elections. 


Posted May 19, 2019

Day 2: Techtextil 2019 Focus is Sustainability, Aisles are Packed in Every Hall

Eddie Ingle, CEO, Wellman

"Towards sustainability" is the theme of this year's Techtextil show in Frankfurt. It became more evident throughout the show as I walked the aisles today seeing what Messe Frankfurt, the show's manager, had stated in its final promotion days before the event opened: "[You'll find} fibers made of recycled polyester, bio-based high-tech textiles, water-conserving dyeing and finishing process, functional and work clothing using little or no solvents, and adhesives."


At a press event today, Eddie Ingle, CEO of Wellman, a subsidiary of Indorama, announced the introduction of new 100% rPET (recycled PET) brand DEJA™ as part of its continuous commitment to deliver responsible and sustainable growth.

Again, I observed heavy booth traffic on all the floors in the 3 halls for Techtextil and Texprocess from the morning opening until the evening close. I didn't encounter one exhibitor who was unhappy about the attendance or quality of the visitors.  This is definitely the place to be if you are in the technical textiles industry. 


At the European Apparel and Textile Confederation (Euratex) press conference, Roberta Adinoff, the organization's economic and statistics manager, delivered an outlook on the state of the technical textiles industry in Europe. Key take-aways from her presentation: European technical textile production last year approached $200 billion. Italy and Germany are Europ'e's biggest producers of technical textiles. The fastest growth of technical textiles over the last 10 years has been achieved by Poland, followed by Belgium, Austria and Portugal. European exports of technical textiles grew by 7%, indicating an increasing global competitiveness of the European industry. The US is the biggest export destination, followed by China.  Overall, since 2015 European export growth of technical textiles has slightly outpaced import growth, resulting in basically a balanced trade for the industry.  

Posted May 15, 2019

Day 1: Techtextil 2019 Opened Its Doors in Frankfurt Today

Mehler booth 24 hours before the show starts and then this morning

Busy Aisles Starts Within First Hour. With almost 40,000 expected during the 4-day run, the halls were filled from the get-go at the Messe Frankfurt fair grounds for Techtextil 2019 and Texprocess 2019. [The picture on the right shows the Mehler display stand 24 hours before the show started and then when the show began this morning.]

Detlef Braun

Detlef Braun, CEO of Messe Frankfurt, opened the show with a special Welcome press conference. Among the key take-aways from his presentation: 1. 60% of material production in German are considered in the technical textiles material category. 2) The global industry is a $200 billion market. 3.  The textile industry in Europe right now is in a "pause" period, fueled in part by uncertainty as Europe waits for results of the upcoming European parlimentary elections and the global trade issues.

Katie Pearce, Global Marketing Manager for Trelleborg

On the show floor, it looked like most of the display stands were busy with order-taking.  Companies like Picanol and Miller Weldmaster seemed to be swamped with customers as I walked the aisles in Hall 3. At the Trelleborg Engineered Coatings booth, Katie Pearce, Global Marketing Manager, was showing the prototype of a smart knitted fabric mattress cover meant to monitor long-term bed-ridden patients. The cover had sensor embedded for the key body pressure points with the mattress such as shoulders, hips and toes and gave out a warning if the patient was stationary for too long. The product is made by Dartex Coatings, a subsidiary of Trolleborg. 



L-R) Dr, Jens Laperre, Thomas Barreiss, and Detlef Braun

During the opening ceremony of Techtextil, International Trade Fair for Technical Textiles and Nonwovens, seven companies were presented with the renowned Techtextil Innovation Awards for textile products distinguished by a particularly high level of innovation. New this year, Techtextil honoured two award winners in the ‘Sustainability’ category. All award-winning projects will be on show in a special exhibition at Techtextil until Friday, May 17.


Two awards in the ‘Sustainability’ category for the first time. In the ‘Sustainability’ category, a Techtextil Innovation Award went to a working group comprising Comfil (Denmark), Chemosvit Fibrochem (Slovakia), the Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology ICT (Germany), the Technical University of Denmark and Centexbel (Belgium) for BIO4SELF, fully bio-based, self-reinforced polymer composites based on PLA fibres. These composites can be used in the fields of automobile manufacturing, the sports industry and medical technology. Moreover, they contribute to the sustainable development goals defined by the United Nations by promoting the transition to an inclusive green economy.

Innovation Award winners for Techtextil and Texprocess.

The second award in the sustainability category went to PICASSO, a joint venture of Portuguese project partners for the development of a coloration and functionalization process for garments based on natural extracts from residues and/or species of mushrooms and plants, as well as enzymes. The project partners are the Centre for Nanotechnology and Smart Materials (CeNTI), the Tintex sustainable textiles company, spice and herb producer Ervital, biotech company Bioinvitro Biotecnologia and the CITEVE textile technology centre.

Award winners in the ‘New Technology’ category

The international jury was particularly impressed by two projects in the ‘New Technology’ category: Robert Bosch GmbH and H. Stoll AG were presented with the Techtextil Innovation Award for a knitted sensor glove. The seamless, 3D flat-knitted glove is made of sensor yarn and offers the wearer sensory and control functions on all fingers, e.g., for operating interfaces in man-machine interaction, for movement control in relation to augmented and virtual-reality applications or rehabilitation purposes in a medical setting. The glove provides the same level of wearing comfort as a conventional glove.

The second award in this category went to Germany’s Northwest Textile Research Centre for its ‘Textile Mining’ project, a functional textile that enables, for example, companies from the metal industry to recycle and recover noble metals, such as gold, platinum and palladium, from industrial waste water. Against the background of a growing shortage of raw materials, industrial waste water is, alongside electrical waste, an important source of noble metals and, therefore, ‘urban mining’, i.e., separating and recovering raw materials from existing resources in urban settings. Other project partners: Kayser Filtertech, Setex-Textilveredlung, Cornelsen Umwelttechnologie, Unimicron Germany and Wieland Edelmetalle (all from Germany).

Award winners in the ‘New Application’ category

In the ‘New Application’ category, the awards went to the German Institutes for Textile and Fibre Research Denkendorf (DITF) and Beira Interior University (DCTT) in Portugal. DITF have developed a space-saving inductive charging coil for hybrid and electric vehicles. Due to a lack of space under most vehicles, it has been very difficult to install inductive charging coils to permit linear scaling of the coil area and thus maintain the equal power density necessary for charging larger batteries. DITF use high-tech knitting technology to meet this challenge. Partnering DITF in this project is Robert Bosch GmbH.

The second award in this category went to the E-Caption 2.0 smart and safe coat developed by the Beira Interior University in Portugal. The coat is primarily designed to protect workers from excess radio-frequency signals while climbing antennas, the number of which is growing worldwide with the increasing spread of mobile telephony and the internet. Protection is given by a textile system that harvests energy and is connected to LEDs that indicate when the radiation level exceeds that recommended by the European Union. The project partner is the Aveiro Institute for Telecommunication.

Award winners in the ‘New Material’ category

In the ‘New Material’ category, the Techtextil Innovation Award 2019 went to Portugal’s Sedacor cork processing company for CORK-A-TEX, a new yarn made of cork. Previously, cork-based textiles for apparel or home textiles have been relatively stiff. The new cork yarn is a flexible product made of a natural material and thus offers additional design opportunities for the fashion industry and interior furnishing.

The jury:

  • Prof Fernando Carrillo Navarrete, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Spain
  • Braz Costa, CITEVE, Centro Tecnológico das Indústrias Téxtil e do Vestuário, Portugal
  • Johannes Diebel, Forschungskuratorium Textil e. V., Deutschland
  • Sabine Gimpel, TITV Greiz Textilforschungsinstitut Thüringen-Vogtland e.V., Germany
  • Dr Jan Laperre (Chairman of the jury), Centexbel, Belgium
  • EMPA – Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology, Switzerland
  • Dr Thomas Stegmaier, ITV Institute for Textile and Process Technology Denkendorf, Germany
  • Dr Hartmut Strese, VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH, Germany
  • Prof Henry Yi Li, Manchester University, UK

This is the 15th time that the Techtextil Innovation Awards have been presented for new developments in the field of technical textiles and textile production. The winning products can be seen at a special exhibition in Hall 4.2 throughout the fair. The concurrent Texprocess, Leading International Trade Fair for Processing Textile and Flexible Materials, honored new technological developments with the Texprocess Innovation Award for the fifth time.  Posted May 14, 2019

Pre-Show: Techtextil/Texprocess Set to Open in Frankfurt

Workers prepare exhibit stands for show.

Record Number of Exhibitors for Shows.  You had to stay alert while walking the trade show floor in Frankfurt this afternoon as forklifts and huge carts shuffled across as the Techtextil 2019 and Texprocess 2019 shows ready for opening on tomorrow.  Messe Frankfurt has announced a record number of exhibitors for the co-located shows.  Techtextil 2019 welcomes 1,501 exhibitors from 57 countries while Texprocess has 317 exhibitors from 34 countries.  Watch for show reports this week.


Steve Warner


Posted May 13, 2019

Coming Events

  • June 3-5: China International Nonwovens Expo and Forum (CINE), Shanghai, China
  • June 4-6: Absorbent Hygiene Training Course, Cary, N.C., USA
  • June 6-8:  Non Woven Tech Asia 2019, New Delhi, India
  • June 12-13:  International Nonwovens Symposium 2019, Vienna, Austria
  • June 12-14:  Super Expo 2019, Broadbeach, QLD, Australia
  • June 18-20: Outdoor Retailer Summer Market, Denver, Colo., USA
  • June 19-20: JEC Forum Chicago, Chicago, Ill., USAA
  • June 20-26:  ITMA 2019, Barcelona, Spain
  • June 24-25:  WIPES Academy, Atlanta, Ga., USA

Click here to view the complete technical textiles events calendar that includes show information links.

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China's Industrial Textile Market Demands Still Remains Vigorous

Despite the increasingly complex industry demands, the Chinese technical textiles market was relatively stable. Nonwovens output increased over last year. Key specific markets such as tire cord also increased in 2018 over 2017. Overall operating income for industrial textiles used in China reached $34 billion. Click here to read the complete summary provided to BeaverLake6 Report by China Textile magazine through our exclusive relationship. Posted February 15, 2019

Does IDEA Show Need to be in Miami Beach?

INDA, the Association of the Nonwovens Fabrics Industry, has issued its final report on IDEA19.  The event held March 25-27, 2019 in Miami Beach, Fla., USA, attracted 6,500+ participants and 509 exhibiting companies from 75 countries.  Show floor space was a record 168,600 square feet, a 9% increase over the previous show. 


Surprisingly, the people and exhibitor participation figures are not record numbers. The IDEA16 show in Boston, Mass., USA, attracted 7000+ and 555 exhibitors. 


So, why was participation down this year from IDEA16?  I think an explanation for the decline is the South Florida location of IDEA19.  Click here to read more.

President Li Lingshen, President, China Nonwovens & Industrial Texiles Association

President Li Lingshen

BeaverLake6 Report is pleased to provide an exclusive interview with Li Lingshen, Ph.D., Vice President of the China National Textile and Apparel Council, and President of the China Nonwovens & Industrial Textiles Association, the overseeing organization for the technical textiles industry in China. Click here to read the interview.

Final Analysis of IFAI Expo 2018 and CAMX18

IFAI President S. Schiffman

IFAI Expo 2018 was the first show under IFAI's new CEO/President Steve Schiffman. In a quick conversation on the first day, Mr. Schiffman thought event attendance was on target with the expectation of a 500 increase over the 4500 total participants (counting both exhibitors and visitors) they had in 2017 in New Orleans. Similarly, a conversation with one of the managers of ACMA, a partner in CAMX, said their pre-registration had already topped the 6500 they had last year in Orlando. (Keep in mind, though, the 2017 CAMX show had to be rescheduled from September to December because of Hurricane Irma.) Click here to read more about the shows. 

NCTO Neglects Automotive Textiles as Organizations Testify          on Proposed USMCA Impact

Positive Reviews but Still Uncertainty. On November 16, 2018, two of the US textile industry associations testified before the US International Trade Commission (ITC) in a special hearing to determine the economic impact of the proposed United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).  The leaders of the American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) and the National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO) provided statements on how they feel the new agreement will affect their member companies. 


The two organizations clearly have different biases; however, in looking over the AAFA and NCTO statements, it appears to me that while the organizations both clearly said they were not offering an endorsement yet of the agreement, they gave general overall approval for USMCA, acknowledging the 1992 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) needed updating. Both organizations are taking a wait-and-see attitude to more fully look at how the agreement impacts the complex supply chain of textiles and apparel. Click here to read more.

NAFTA Replacement Agreement Negotiated. On October 1, President Donald Trump announced the US, Mexico and Canada had reached an agreement whichreplaces the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that went into effect in 1994. The new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) contains provisions and language that has an impact on the technical textiles industry; the most important are 1) a special section covering textiles and apparel and 2) rules of origin that will require 75% of automotive content (under NAFTA 62.5%) be made in North America. Mexico and Canada are the two largest importers of US made technical textiles and the automotive industry is the largest intended end market of these technical textiles. Click here to go to the United States Trade Representative's website and read the "Textiles and Apparel Goods" chapter. Posted October 3, 2018

State of the Chinese Technical Textiles Markets in 2017

Are you looking for a quick understanding of the China technical textiles industry? Through our special relationship with China Nonwovens & Industrial Textiles Association (CNITA) and their China Textile publication, BeaverLake6 Report is pleased to post the English-translation of the recently issued "Status Quo of China's Nonwovens and Industrial Textiles Industry, 2017." The report covers the different levels of the industry, geographic export demographics, and forecast the needs in the major end market applications. Click here to read the report in our China Textile website section. 

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