The Indian textiles industry, currently estimated at around $108 bn, is expected to reach $223 bn by 2021. The Indian textile industry contributes approximately 5 percent to India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 14 percent to the overall Index of Industrial Production (IIP). Further, the organized apparel segment is expected to grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of more than 13 percent over a 10-year period. With the introduction of Government investment schemes (TCIDS and APES), $140 bn of foreign investments are expected.
Even as these factors drive the growth, the rising consumer trends around sustainable fashion and ‘green’ clothing, is gaining popularity. Especially the millennial consumer, who is more aware of global trends and responsible consumerism, and the upwardly mobile, are driving a number of Indian designers to churn out chic ‘green fashion’ lines. As per the United Nations Environment Estimates worldwide report, the global fashion industry produces 20 percent global water wastage and 10 percent of global carbon emissions – more than all international flights and maritime shipping. Apart from returning to natural dyes, organic fabrics and traditional modes of manufacturing, the use of eco-friendly products for accessorizing and embellishments will go a long way in making fashion truly green and sustainable.
Corozo, a native of the Amazon rainforest in Ecuador, has been harvested naturally and used as a popular material for buttons and embellishments since the 1860s. While it was extensively replaced with plastic in the 1940s, Corozo is again gaining popularity, especially in India. Ecuador has been one of the largest exporters of Corozo to India and worldwide. As the only exporter of Corozo in the world, Ecuador has been effectively providing and promoting the use of Corozo to textile manufacturers and designers, helping change the narrative and design of global fashion.
In India, PRO Ecuador, a part of the Ministry of Production, Foreign Trade, Investment, and Fisheries, under the Government of Ecuador, has been collaborating with Indian Textile manufacturers, like Raymonds, Blackberry, SS Homme etc., to drive the use of Corozo, also known as Vega Ivory, to promote green clothing. In the recently concluded Lakme Fashion Week, PRO Ecuador collaborated with a designer label, Ka Sha to showcase the versatility of Corozo, which was very well received.