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  • Growth potential in fabric graphics market

    Sponsored by IFAI Market Research

    Digital technology is the fastest growing method of printing textiles. In 2007, digital printing accounted for less than one percent of the global market for printed textiles. Its share is likely to grow to as much as 10 percent in three to five years. Digital textile printing applications in the United States, especially wide format, continue to grow at about 10 percent per year. The sustainability movement in the United States is a key issue driving growth in the soft signage market.

    More direct to fabric printers are entering the digital textile printing market with new technology and productivity enhancements, including new large format capability, increased printer resolution and output speed, new inkjet printing technologies, improved textile coating technologies, and decreased equipment costs.

    A Digital Textile Survey shows digital direct-to-fabric manufacturing process as the second most used manufacturing process (25.7 percent) for imaging finished textiles. Applications driving growth in digital direct-to-fabric imaging: Soft signage, short runs for events, fabric samples, and custom fabrics for commercial interior design.

    Continued product enhancements should enable a strong future for digital textile printing, although the current economic climate will likely slow the growth seen in 2007 and the first half of 2008. Outlook is strongest at the low end of the market.