Hanging by a Thread! Impact of COVID-19 on Garment Manufacturing
Are you struggling to get by with your apparel business amid the pandemic? You're not alone. Research has shown that online transactions are predicted to account for 36 percent of total fashion retail by 2022.
COVID-19 has revolutionized the entire world, and the garment manufacturing industry is no exception to this change. With reducing shop visits and supply chains closing, apparel businesses are constantly adapting to the new normal. Here's how the apparel-making and garment manufacturing industry has been affected by the pandemic.
COVID-19 has significantly reduced the demand for new clothing, which has heavily affected garment manufacturers worldwide.
Many retailers have shut down operations and closed their outlets to protect their staff and customers, selling their products and services online.
Downsizing and quarantine periods have altered many customers' priorities who are now spending more on household goods and homeware rather than apparel fashion.
Nobody expected the rapid spread of coronavirus, which is why some designers also encountered an oversupply of garments. But with reduced demand, many retailers have had to cancel their orders and postpone their shipments out of fear of overstocking.
With a large amount of inventory that's sitting and collecting dust, garment manufacturers are struggling to store or sell their products.
Out of Work
With reduced demand, fashion brands refused to offer remuneration for the garments that were already made. As a result, factories either cut wages or terminated their garment workers. With short-term shutdowns of factories, millions of workers were left without jobs.
Since orders have been restored, some brands have compensated garment workers, while other manufacturers are still not cooperating. During the temporary factory closures, many workers did not get a regular income, which drowned them in debt and lowered their family's food budget.
Even if the demand for apparel manufacturing returns to normal, fashion designers and small businesses will likely end up with much seasonal clothing that they couldn't sell during this year.
The demand for unsold seasonal garments may only be seen in the following year, but given the dynamic nature of the fashion industry, the styles and trends will have evolved.
To adapt to the new normal, some garment manufacturers have started producing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) since face masks, and protective gowns are selling like hot cakes during COVID-19.
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