current scenario

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With the expansion of the fashion industry globally, textile waste has increased. In developing countries as India, there is a substantial quantity of pre-consumer waste emerging from local production units and tailoring setups categorized as MSE's. It is estimated that approximately 10-20% of textiles are wasted during garment manufacturing.  Pre-consumer textile waste mainly originates from textile waste, deadstock, and leftovers and primarily consists of small-large textile pieces. According to evidence; Pre-consumer textile waste generated at the regional level essentially does not make its way to recycler compared to post-consumer.

This gap between textile waste producers and recyclers exists primarily due to the awareness, logistical challenges of a large country with far-flung manufacturing setups. Manufacturers are small-scale with no infrastructure and resources to comply with waste management. Further, there is little to no organization in collecting and aggregating domestic textile waste regionally, which explains the lack of importance for recycling at the local level—implying that most pre-consumer waste ends up at landfills rather than with recyclers

Textile Waste Problem

The apparel MSEs manufacturing has bitterly evidenced the social and environmental implications associated with fast production cycles, overuse of resources, waste generation, ecological pollution, and unethical labor conditions due to its linear waste model approach. Significant textile wastes are generated at the production stage, specifically at micro, small sector industries, and sent to landfills or incarnation.  It significantly affects global environmental pollution, as both the production and processing of the necessary raw materials contribute to pollution.

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Linear Textile waste supply chain in India. Source: CIAF (circular. apparel)

Barriers of Apparel MSEs

Lack of


limited research on MSEs aspects, waste management, linear operations

Lack of

Infrastructure & Resources

MSEs are almost entirely unorganized, decentralized, and based mainly on household infrastructures. They lack financial, educational resources, infrastructure for collection, and sustainable approaches.

Lack of


As manufacturing processes are so complex and diverse and these manufacturers are mostly household-based, seem to be unaware of many practical tools and strategies for quality, productivity, and long-term improvement that are accessible, and they fail to implement them due to a lack of knowledge and resources.

Lack of 


Lack of a standard holistic assessment framework, compliances, and regulations . No support for their implementation for  effective decision-making and its implementation at the local regional level


MSE's are constantly struggling to develop appropriate strategies for competing with larger organizations in terms of sustainable development. There's a need to formalize their structure, operations, and system to become more competitive and efficient towards sustainable development

Pushkar, Rajasthan India

"Pushkar region of Rajasthan, India, is selected for investigation for this research project. It is a small but emerging hub of the garment manufacturing and exports industry, where more than 150 MSEs cater to international fashion buyers, brands, and companies."

HCD Research Question

Could apparel MSEs in developing countries, with limited space, finance, and resources, develop their sustainable growth to close the loop of Textile waste?

Could textile waste be used to fuel the development of the local fashion system at the local community level?