January 26, 2019
When it comes to apparel, fast fashion isn’t good for anyone. Low-quality fashion items manufactured by companies with low labor standards and low price points don’t last. But on-demand clothing manufacturing is changing the game. Keep reading to find out why ODM spells trouble for fast fashion.
Fast Fashion Has Serious Environmental Effects
According to the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), the fashion industry is one of the largest global users of water. In traditional fast fashion manufacturing, producing just one cotton t-shirt uses 2,700 liters of water, which could keep a person hydrated for two and a half years. One of the biggest contributors to this overuse of water is the amount of waste produced in fast fashion processing.
Instead of using an on-demand clothing manufacturing system by which the manufacturer only makes what the customer needs, fast fashion works on an old manufacturing model of creating as many items as possible for as cheaply as possible. When trends change and excess stock goes unsold? All that product turns into waste.
On the other hand, on-demand apparel manufacturing is based on the idea that companies shouldn’t have to buy (or manufacture) more than customers demand. With low minimum order requirements and quick turnaround times, it’s easy to keep a low inventory and avoid excess that might otherwise end up in a landfill. In this way, on-demand manufacturing not only reduces waste but also prevents the draining of precious resources.
Fast Fashion Means Tons of Consumer Waste
Today’s typical apparel from large retailers has to hit a certain level of affordability because consumers know they’re not going to be keeping the item for very long. The problem is this: What happens to the clothes that fall apart or simply go “out of style” with consumers? According to Forbes, many buyers today have a “see-now-buy-now” mentality that is changing trends faster than retailers can even stock the shelves. But this kind of consumerism has high costs.
Fast fashion is indeed fast to come in style, fast to go out, and fast through the consumer lifecycle. When these items are discarded, they end up in landfills because the quality is so low, they can’t usually be repurposed or thrifted.
On-demand clothing manufacturing allows companies to create higher quality items that will last longer and will maintain their shape, color, and quality for years to come. With higher quality manufacturing comes the ability to push through to a higher price point. While fast fashion follows the “keeping up with the Joneses” mentality, on-demand clothing manufacturing can allow companies to take advantage of bespoke and subculture trends that thwart the fast fashion culture.
How ODM Raises the Bar
Unlike fast fashion, on-demand clothing manufacturing makes it easy for companies to mirror the environmental and social values of their customers.
Instead of investing in low-quality fashion items with a short life cycle and low price, companies can take advantage of the shifting social tides and greater environmental consciousness without hindering their profit margin. ODM offers quick turnaround times, no minimum order requirements, and a high level of customization that meets the needs of today’s meticulous shopper.
Want to learn more about how The/Studio’s custom manufacturing services can help your apparel company stay on top of trends and your bottom line? Read our story today.