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How to drive textile exports through improved quality control, ET Retail


The Indian textile industry demonstrates remarkable prowess throughout its complete value chain, covering a wide range of segments including natural and synthetic fibers, apparel and home furnishings. In fact, it is the second largest employer after agriculture and at 6 percent, contributes significantly to the nation’s GDP.

With aspirations of becoming a global powerhouse, India has set an ambitious goal of achieving USD 100 billion in textile exports by 2030.

However, achieving such a formidable target will hinge on the industry overcoming various challenges, such as quality, innovation and design, as well as policies, that will help boost the sector and help it reach the benchmarks it needs for global success. Hence, it is crucial that we explore strategies and initiatives which can drive textile exports and fortify India’s position as a reliable and competitive global textiles player.

The Need for Emphasis on Rigorous Testing
In the Indian textile industry, there is a significant challenge when it comes to the lack of emphasis on quality testing across the value chain. This issue is a key roadblock to India’s search for global textile supremacy, as international buying houses have very exacting standards for the products they source, and poor quality is a major cause for shipment rejection. However, this critical step is often neglected, leading to the production of material that may not meet the required benchmarks.

Producing and delivering defective fabrics can have severe repercussions for textile manufacturers. Customer rejections and returns due to quality issues can lead to a loss of revenue, damage to the brand’s reputation and, consequently, a decline in customer loyalty and trust. Additionally, the costs associated with rectifying or replacing defective fabrics, as well as the potential legal liabilities, can further strain the financial resources of the company. There are also serious environmental concerns to keep in mind, given that a lot of resources already went into the manufacture, which are then wasted, and that rejected materials often end up in landfills.

To mitigate these issues, textile manufacturers must prioritise regular testing at different stages of production. This includes testing raw materials, spinning and weaving tests, as well as conducting intermediate and final product inspections.

There are a number of different tests that help in quality assessment, such as count testing which analyses the coarseness or fineness of the yarn, twist testing which provides indicators for the yarn’s strength, appearance and final fabric performance, tensile strength testing which assesses the maximum load the yarn can take before breaking, hairiness testing, which quantifies how rough or smooth the texture of the yarn is, and evenness testing which evaluates the imperfections in the yarn, and therefore its consistency.

By conducting these tests, manufacturers can analyse the quality and performance of the yarn, which is critical, as different qualities of yarn can have different production applications, and any mismatch can result in the final product not meeting specifications adequately, thereby causing a rejection from the buyer.

There are additional measures that need to be implemented to enhance exports and strengthen the textile industry.

A Shift in Perspective: The Indian textile sector is ripe for a fundamental shift in perspective, which will involve all stakeholders looking at the industry as service-centric rather than simply manufacturing-oriented, and prioritising customer expectations for quality and timely delivery. This will help enhance their reputation and improve business relationships.

Policy Support: Since cost is a major consideration for the sector, all stakeholders need to collaborate on the creation of robust policies and international trade agreements that create opportunities for Indian manufacturers to cater to buyers across the world.

Collaboration and International Partnerships: Strategic partnerships with international players offer a valuable opportunity for accelerating quality improvements in Indian textiles. By leveraging global expertise and advanced technologies through collaborations, manufacturers can drive growth and innovation.

Strengthening the Supply Chain and Infrastructure: Efficient supply chain management is crucial for delivering high-quality textiles. This is why India should be laser-focused on strengthening its infrastructure, optimising logistics, and implementing robust tracking systems so that it can improve quality control and customer satisfaction.

Innovation in Design and Branding: To remain competitive, Indian manufacturers must prioritise innovation in design. Investing in research and development, fostering collaborations, and implementing effective branding initiatives will create distinct identities and elevate their products in the global market.

Sustainability and Adaptability: Sustainability is no longer a choice but a necessity in the textile industry. By aligning with sustainability standards, incorporating eco-friendly practices, and meeting evolving market demands for ethical and socially responsible products, Indian manufacturers can secure long-term success and contribute to a better future.

In conclusion, driving textile exports and bolstering the industry requires a multifaceted approach that can help enhance the quality and cost-effectiveness of its products and eventually help India realise its ambitious goals of leadership in the textile industry.

The writer is Founder and CEO, The Yarn Bazaar

  • Published On Jul 30, 2023 at 11:31 AM IST

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