Technology, sustainability and innovation are key drivers of the fashion and textile industry that will revolutionize the industry and its processes and manufacturing operations. The Fashionsustain international conference format is dedicated to precisely these topics. Next year, the theme will be water in the textile industry.

On 16 January 2019, top speakers from industry such as Vogue Australia, WWF and Spindye will demonstrate at the power plant in Berlin that the solution-oriented focus on the future use of water as a resource has gained in importance for the industry worldwide.

Sustainable water management

The focus here is on the ubiquitous challenges of sustainable water management. The conference, organised by Messe Frankfurt, will show how the interplay of collaboration and competition leads to new sustainable technologies and innovations that drive the paradigm shift in the fashion industry.


“For the third time in succession, relevant decision-makers from the industry will be presenting practical solutions, technological innovations and the latest market developments at the Fashionsustain Conference,” says Olaf Schmidt, Head of Textile and Textile Technologies at Messe Frankfurt. “With our trend-setting conference format, we invite all visitors to an interdisciplinary dialogue on truly sustainable fashion concepts”.

Fashionsustain: Four new perspectives on the subject of water

A global view is taken of water as a resource, and the production of cotton and denim is discussed from the perspective of large and small farmers. Fashionsustain is dedicated to important and complex topics concerning the importance of water in the fashion and textile industry.

The conference day will open with a presentation by Clare Press, Editor-at-Large at Vogue Australia. With her speech “We Are Water Inspiration & Breathing” she addresses an appeal to the fashion and textile industry. In the first session, the Fashionsustain will critically question the issue of water and examine it globally. Philipp Wagnitz, International Director for Freshwater Resources at the WWF, will discuss the critical impact of textile production on inland waters with various actors from society, the fashion industry and science.

Environmental impacts in the textile industry

Throughout the conference, Fashionsustain will also address the environmental impacts of cotton and denim and ask the question: What would happen if a whole sector of the industry really started to change towards sustainable value creation? Is that even possible? With a view to finding solutions, a critical and open dialogue will be conducted on the value-oriented transformation of supply chains and the limits of this change.

In the shop window of change

In the following session Fashionsustain will finally raise the topic to a higher level of abstraction: Cradle to Cradle, Ocean Plastics, the socio-economic impacts of natural fibres and alternative crops, as well as innovative technical recycled and viscose fibres will be discussed. The list of speakers includes Micke Magnusson, CEO of the sustainable Swedish textile dye company Spindye, and Amira Jehia, co-founder of the fair sweater label Blue Ben.

There will also be an Ideas Think Tank – “Thinkathon” – which will serve as a space for open exchange and creative thought processes. During the “Thinkathon”, multidisciplinary teams develop new approaches for the sustainability transformation of the fashion and textile industry twice a year.


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Image: Daniel-Gebhardt-Photography