Global production of digitally printed textiles is growing at an annual rate of 25 per cent and at present, digitally printed textiles account for just 2 per cent of total printed textile production worldwide. It is expected to account for 5 per cent share by 2017. According to a report by Textile Intelligence, digital textile printing offers greater freedom of creativity and flexibility in design and is more cost efficient for short print runs, providing scope of expansion for the digital textile-printing industry.
While the production of digitally printed textiles is currently weighted heavily towards developing countries, however, there is likely to be an increase in production in Europe in the future. The increase in production in European countries will be driven by the fact that some European textile companies are planning to shift digital printing to Europe to satisfy local tastes, facilitate quick response manufacturing, release a greater number of collections each year and serve the fast fashion market better.
There are opportunities for expansion in the luxury apparel segment as digital textile printing enables retailers of luxury apparel to produce small quantities of high quality, limited edition pieces cost efficiently. Further scope for expansion lies in the area of mass customisation, whereby a consumer is able to personalise a product by choosing a design on a dedicated web page in a retailer's online store for subsequent production by a digital textile printer.