25 Feb 2004
Cotton Fabrics(HKTDC Fashion - Fabrics & Accessories, Vol 02,2004)
Vol 2, 2004
Kin Hing Hong Textiles Ltd features a range of pure cotton woven fabrics in colourful prints or solid colours
Well known for comfort, cotton is one of the most popular textiles in the world. Hong Kong fabric manufacturers supply a wide range of cotton materials to help garment makers weave their own success stories.
Kin Hing Hong Textiles Ltd, whose catalogue features a range of pure cotton woven fabrics, including sheeting, twill and canvas, is a good example. The cotton used by this manufacturer hails from the Chinese mainland. It also makes cotton blends, such as cotton/nylon. The nylon comes from both Taiwan and Korea.
This company turns out HK$200m-300m worth of fabrics of different kinds annually, of which 70% are cotton-based fabrics. The cotton cloth range is made in widths of 44 inches and 58 inches, and prices are about HK$10-20 per yard FOB Hong Kong depending on the item, says director Lui Ming.
"We provide good quality and service," stresses Lui. "We have QC teams which inspect all fabrics at different stages during and after production. If a customer is not satisfied with our products, we will exchange them with goods that do satisfy. That is our guarantee."
Minimum order size is about 500-1,200 yards per colour, depending on the cloth. Delivery takes place some 7-14 days after order confirmation.
Established in 1990, the firm exports mainly to Europe, the US, Canada and Asia, shipping from four factories in the mainland provinces of Zhejiang, Jiangsu and Hubei that cover a total floor area of 100,000 square metres and employ more than 800 workers.
Besides supplying traditional cotton fabrics, Hong Kong manufacturers, like Good Future Textile Co Ltd, also adapt their fabrics to meet product trends.
"Our strength is in cotton-spandex fabrics, which will become popular in the market. They are more elastic than pure cotton fabrics," says general manager Lam Yiu Kwong.
Cotton and spandex come in different ratios, such 97:3, 96:4, and 92:8. They can come as jersey, and can feature ribs or stripes.
Good Future buys cotton from Pakistan, India, the Chinese mainland, Thailand and Indonesia. Spandex comes from Korea, Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
"Prices of our fabrics vary greatly with time," says Lam, declining to give specific reference quotations.
Set up in 1988, the firm produces 800,000 pounds of cotton-based fabrics, mainly knitted, per month. Minimum order size ranges from 1-30 pounds, depending on the fabric, and the delivery lead-time is 14-45 days.
The group also supplies garments made from its own fabrics, and major patrons are the US, Hong Kong and Macau.
Good Future produces at its mainland factory in Guangdong Province, where a 20,000-square-metre facility is staffed with 500 workers.
Hong Kong cotton fabric producers pay great attention to design and development, as exemplified by Easy Way Textile Ltd. "We have a fabric development team for research and development. We come up with some new fabrics every season," says sales manager Ellis Wong.
Besides pure cotton, the company also makes woven fabrics such as cotton blended with polyester or nylon. The cotton comes from the mainland, the US and Pakistan, while the mainland and the US supply other materials.
Each month, Easy Way turns out in excess of three million yards of cotton-based fabrics of different widths, mostly 43-44 inches or 57-58 inches. These sell for about US$1.60-3.00 per yard FOB Hong Kong, and the minimum order size is 2,000 yards per colour per order.
"We have invested in 25 sets of machines for making samples and we can produce new samples for viewing within 20 days," Wong says.
Lead-time is 45-60 days after order confirmation, and the firm sells mainly to buying offices and garment manufacturers from the US and Europe. "Our customers include big garment brands," Wong notes, adding: "The US accounts for 70% of sales and Europe 30%. We are now trying to increase the weighting in the European market."
Founded in 1983, Easy Way runs three factories in the mainland provinces of Hunan and Guangdong with a combined workforce of about 2,600 and a total floor area of more than 200,000 square metres.
Hong Kong manufacturers distinguish themselves with a rich variety of products, and Star Enterprise (HK) Co Ltd is no exception. The firm supplies an extensive array of cotton blends, including linen/cotton, ramie/cotton and hemp/cotton.
Sold under the Blue Star brand, these fabrics can be knitted, woven, or twilled, and can be dyed and/or printed. "We buy cotton yarn from the mainland, India and Pakistan," says spokesperson Adeline Lam. The linen comes from Europe, and ramie from the mainland.
"Our biggest markets are Europe and Asia," Lam says, adding that Star also sells to the US, the Middle East, India and Brazil. "Customers include famous garment brands from the US and Europe."
There is no minimum order requirement, and the company usually delivers within 30 days of order confirmation. "Prices differ with the season," says Lam.
Star runs three factories in Hunan Province, with more than 600 workers and a total floor area of 218,500 square metres. The facilities are equipped with 15,000 spindles and 180 weaving looms.
With such production capabilities to hand, it's no wonder that Hong Kong's fabric manufacturers are proving they are masters of the loom.
WRITTEN BY LIZA LEE
Future Textile Co Ltd
Wayseng Ind Bldg
21 Wang Lok St
Yuen Long Ind Estate
Yuen Long, New Territories
Hing Hong Textiles Ltd
167-169 Yu Chau St
Sham Shui Po, Kowloon
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