From idea to transfer
Energy crisis and difficult conditions hit textile research industry hard
Representatives of German Party BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN visit STFI
The energy crisis is plunging the German textile industry in 2022 into the most severe crisis since the 1980s and 1990s, when production in Western Europe largely collapsed and migrated on a large scale. Nonprofit textile research is no less affected by current price trends and limited raw material availability. To highlight the precarious situation, STFI is currently seeking dialogue with local political representatives. On October 28, 2022, Bernhard Herrmann, Member of the German Parliament, and Gerhard Liebscher, Member of the Saxony Parliament, from the German Party BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN visited the STFI to gather information on the situation of textile research.
Research as well as the textile industry, which is mainly dominated by midsize companies, are very concerned about the current energy crisis. Price explosion, uncertain contract situations and high energy requirements for the production processes are the major challenges. For example, an average midsize weaving mill with six employees has an annual throughput of 800,000 kWh for electricity alone (source: Südwesttextil 2022 magazine, No. 134). The two politicians Bernhard Herrmann, MdB, member of the Committee for Climate Protection and Energy in the German Bundestag, and Gerhard Liebscher, MdL, spokesman for economic policy, visited the STFI last Friday. They are already in dialogue with stakeholders involved and now also have an open ear for the needs of non-profit industrial research sector, to which the STFI belongs. In conversation with Dr. Heike Illing-Günther, Hendrik Beier and Dr. Yvette Dietzel, the complex interrelationships were worked out. The fact that industrial research on a semi-industrial scale is energy- and material-intensive was demonstrated to the visitors during a tour of the Center for Textile Lightweight Engineering and Center of Excellence in Nonwovens. The problems caused by the energy crisis are also accompanied by a whole series of imponderables in terms of funding policy.