COVID-19 Spread Prompts Industry Events Cancellations, Postponements

The American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC) managed to host its annual International Conference & Exhibition as scheduled recently. But that event snuck in under the wire before it became clear that the threat posed by the spread of COVID-19 was one to take seriously. Some global events already had been postponed, and now U.S. show organizers and associations are following suit, by either postponing, cancelling or moving spring events to an online format. Some organizations are waiting to see how the second half of the year shakes out before committing to new dates, while others have gone ahead and rescheduled.

One of the largest shows for the U.S. industry in 2020, Techtextil North America and Texprocess Americas, has been moved from May 12-14 to December 15-17, 2020. In a statement about the decision to move the show, Kristi Meade, show director – Technical Shows: Textiles, Sewn Products, Equipment and Technology, Messe Frankfurt, said: “Up until this point, we were optimistic that May was far enough away to proceed with the events as planned. However, as the situation has evolved, we feel that we must act in the best interest of our exhibitors, visitors and the industry overall.”

  • Here are just some of the other impacted industry events this spring:
    • The Synthetic Yarn and Fabrics Association (SYFA) has cancelled its spring meeting. The fall meeting is scheduled for November 5-6, 2020;
    • The Americas Apparel Producers’ Network (AAPN) has rescheduled the Carolina Mill Tour for September 29-October 2, 2020. The Charlotte Regional Conference will also move to the same week. AAPN also has postponed its annual meeting in Miami with a new date to be determined;
    • The Southern Textile Association (STA) has cancelled its Northern and Southern Division spring meetings. Dates for its fall meetings have yet to be announced;
    • The Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry (INDA) has announced events in May and through the end of the year, including the World of Wipes® Conference in Minneapolis June 22-25, currently will move ahead as scheduled. However, INDA has cancelled training courses previously scheduled in March and April;
    • The Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) has postponed the upcoming Fabricators Conference and Showcase and is looking at transitioning other events including the Smart Fabrics Summit and the Outlook Conference to virtual events. IFAI currently plans to host IFAI Expo 2020 as scheduled November 4-6, 2020;
    • Global Nonwovens event INDEX™20 in Geneva, Switzerland, was postponed until October 20-23, 2020;
    • The Sewn Products Equipment & Suppliers of the Americas (SPESA) has postponed its Advancements in Manufacturing Technologies Conference indefinitely;
    • The National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO) has postponed its annual meeting until next year;
    ITM 2020 and Hightex 2020 in Turkey have been moved from June dates to July 14-18, 2020; and
    FESPA Global Print Expo 2020, European Sign Expo 2020, Sportswear Pro and FESPA Brasil 2020 have all been postponed with new dates yet to be announced.

March/April 2020