The second edition of the Sustainable Textile School (STS) focussed on the viable recycling model in the textile chain. Around 150 participants from over 30 countries gathered in Chemnitz, Germany, from September 10-12, 2018, for the event. Guests from textile companies came from India, Vietnam, Turkey, China, and Ethiopia: one of Africa’s textile hotspots.
The international conference founded by Technische Universität Chemnitz and Gherzi was developed in collaboration with academic/research institutes – including London College of Fashion, Swedish School of Textiles, and Schweizerische Textilfachschule STF – as a global textile education platform to exchange knowledge and experience on sustainable practices.
At the Hartmannfabrik, an ex-locomotive factory, sustainable business models, and technologies to chemical processes were presented and backed up by scientific facts through eight different lectures, discussion, and workshops. Speakers and experts included Heinz Zeller from Hugo Boss, professor José Teunissen from London College of Fashion, Rolf Heimann from Hessnatur Foundation, Hendrik Alpen from H&M, and Ina Budde of circular.fashion. How innovation, digitisation, and networked production technologies are transforming the industry were explored alongside social and educational topics, according to a media statement.
Sustainable cotton farming initiative Chetna Organic from India, and Bernburg-based rhubarb technology GmbH with their innovative rhubarb root leather tanning process, were the winners of the 2018 STS environmental innovation prizes (each worth €500).
Furthermore, the dedicated student programme expanded this year to host 20 students from 6 countries who had the opportunity to talk directly with entrepreneurs, scientists, and representatives of international organisations about the future of the textile industry. As one of the most polluting industries on the planet, sustainable methods need to be implemented at every stage of the supply chain to close the loop, and the STS firmly believes that this can be achieved through good training, further education, and collective thinking.