The “Textile Made in Italy 5.0” conference was recently held in Milan. This initiative was designed to talk about technical textiles, a not so well known segment of Italian textile production, but that has given the country a new record in recent years, as it is now Europe's leading producer of these materials.
Technical textiles are textiles that have evolved in performance, are applied to the most diverse fields and have now become indispensable elements of our daily lives. These new materials range from sectors including from aerospace to surgery, from sport to construction, from boating to electronics and occupational safety.
The sector achieved a total turnover of €6.71 billion in 2021, surpassing traditional competitors such as Northern European countries.
Italian technical textiles’ turnover represents 37.9% of Italian textile production and 25.8% of the entire European production, which is worth €26 billion. Italian exports in the sector account for almost 50%, as it counts over €3 billion.
This industry segment employs just over 27,000 people in about 2,800 mainly small companies, with a very high level of specialisation and research for the development of ever new material performance.
The day opened with the greetings of the President of the Technical Textiles Section of SMI - TexClubTec Elisabetta Gaspari and those of the President of Sistema Moda Italia Sergio Tamborini, who highlighted the value of this specific production as a decisive element of the future of Italian circular textile manufacturing.
Other in-depth speeches explained the main characteristics of this sector. Among others participants included: Andrea Crespi, general manager, Eurojersey; Antoine Mangogna, CEO, Saati, and Luca Sburlati, CEO, Pattern.
A specific talk was dedicated to technical textiles and sustainability and involved: Costantino Colnaghi, CEO, XLance; Chiara Ferraris, head of communications, Radici Group; Silvana Pezzoli, executive-vice president, Sitip Spa; Grazia Cerini, CEO and general manager, Centro Tessile Cotoniero ed Abbigliamento.
“This first working day aims to show how the primacy of this system can push us to 'make the system' in a new, not rhetorical, but active, increasingly cohesive and flexible way,” explained Elisabetta Gaspari, President, SMI Technical Textiles Section.
"Today, technical textiles are a fundamental element of the circular economy scenario we are building for the years to come. The performance of textiles will become a rule and to this end it is necessary to increase the interactions between the various sectors of textile & apparel production as an impulse to the growth of our fashion system," he added.
"Italian textiles, well known for their fundamental contribution to fashion, play an indispensable role for our lives, from medical to technology, from safety to construction, to automotive, as well as being a valuable ally in stemming environmental problems," commented Sergio Tamborini, president, Sistema Moda Italia.
"The technical textiles sector represents a true European and qualitative record. This conference aims to highlight the excellencies that guarantee Italy a leading position, with a view to promoting more and more collaborations with other industries,” he added.