InfoTrends has announced its 2013-2018 Digital Textile Forecast. This forecast analyses the textile market to establish application, ink usage, material splits, and trends as seen by technologist, manufacturing, and distribution, and digital printing system user stakeholders.
Digital printed textiles worldwide in 2013 accounted for about 600 Million square meters of printed fabrics that are estimated to grow at 39% GAGR by 2018 to about 30 billion square meters. While the global market will see growth, EMEA will remain strongest in overall print volume and production textile printing during this time frame. InfoTrends has also found that garment is the largest market, but décor is also growing rapidly. Industrial applications are fragmented and require specific technical developments but are also growing.
A key area that is developing rapidly is the industry's capacity for printing on fibers, such as cotton, using reactive inks. However, the growth in the use of manmade materials, including polyester based fabrics, is driving growth in the use of sublimation and direct disperses inks. Pigments inks are emerging, but are primarily used in Décor application where these inks support simplification of production processes and the durability of pigments.
InfoTrends has also identified several key growth drivers in this market which include significant improvements to the environmental impact of textile printing. This is due to the migration to digital print technology, democratization of design from short run printing, new business opportunities for small and large producers such as digital printers, and improvements in operational efficiencies for fabric finishers by reducing tooling and enabling just in time manufacturing. These factors reduce waste, inventory and overhead and improve profitability.
As owners and retailers become more sensitive to their product impact on the environment, as well as address consumer needs for creativity and customization, they are increasingly looking to digital producers as thought leaders that are fundamentally changing the supply chain and helping them become sustainable and profitable.