A DELEGATION OF TEN TEXTILE COMPANIES FROM GERMANY TRAVELLED TO KAHRAMANMARAS, A TEXTILE HOTSPOT IN THE SOUTHEAST OF TURKEY FROM APRIL 26TH TO 30TH TO DISCOVER THE TEXTILE SECTOR IN THE REGION THAT IS HIGHLY FOCUSED ON YARN, FABRIC AND GARMENT PRODUCTION.
Kindly invited by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Kahramanmaras (KMTSO), Sourcebook organized a sourcing trip bringing fashion brands, corporate fashion companies, fabric wholesalers, production agencies and fabric fairs e.g. Lillika Eden, Sveekery, 4Hunks, Modeinstitut Berlin, Der Rote Faden and Munich Fabric Start.
The hospitality and the well established infrastructure of the Kahramanmaras region (or Maras, as the locals say) is a great benefit and a time and cost advantage for yarn, fabric and garment buyers and wholesalers. Since each of the 1000+ textile mills and manufacturers are located within 20km of the city center you can get around easily, arrange meetings and visit companies.
After a day of presentations and B2B meetings at the KMTSO headquarters we had a wonderful dinner with our hosts and the participating companies from Maras. We were also treated to talks about the history of the regional textile sector while enjoying the famous goat milk ice cream from the nearby mountains.
The next day was packed with factory visits to a number of different mills. Everything from yarn spinning, dyeing, processing, knitting and weaving to screen printing, cutting and sewing of nearly every garment type on an uplevel, clean and well organized standard were shown by the company representatives who mostly speak pretty good English or German. We learned that more than 35% of the knitted and woven fabrics made in Turkey come from Maras. A number of manufacturers provide organic and GOTS certified qualities.
Day 3 started with a guided tour of the Kahramanmaras Textile Machinery Show – an international fair that showcases the latest innovations in textile machinery. The show included everything from fully automized dyeing laboratories to vertically integrated direct-on-garment printers.
In conclusion, Kahramanmaras is worth to visit if you are looking for fabrics and garment manufacturers without the Istanbul traffic hassle and the lack of transparency and flexibility of production in East Asia. Thanks for having us, Maras, and hope to see you soon!