Sustainability and digitisation: the two overarching topics of Frankfurt Fashion Week are the DNA that makes up Neonyt. Fair fashion pioneers, established brands and sustainable newcomers will be coming together at Neonyt to define and disrupt the industry: fashion is becoming the interface of design and sustainability, inclusion and digitalisation, responsibility and technology, diversity and conformity.
“A lack of transparency in textile supply and value chains and avoidable environmental pollution existed before the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, as did manmade climate change,” says Olaf Schmidt, Vice President of Textiles & Textile Technologies at Messe Frankfurt. “But in times of crisis, these global problems have shifted even more into the focus. The question we need to be asking ourselves now is how we can change the status quo and confront these challenges together.”
Neonyt approved: checked for sustainability and fashionably curated
Before being added to the exhibitor portfolio, labels that wish to exhibit at Neonyt have always had to undergo a sustainability and style check. In a several-page questionnaire, interested labels have to provide specific information about the ecological and social aspects of their products, including proof of certification from organisations like Bluesign, GOTS, Fair Trade or Oeko-Tex, as well as multi-stakeholder programmes or codes of conduct. They are also asked questions about their carbon and water footprints, their supply and value chains and their resource efficiency and innovative production cycles. Only companies that meet at least 70% of the requirements may exhibit at Neonyt. The tradeshow’s cross-sector community – agencies, buyers, retailers, marketing and CSR officers, business journalists and fashion editors – is therefore guaranteed the highest sustainability standards. The sustainability checks were developed and carried out in collaboration with Magdalena Schaffrin and Max Gilgenmann from Studio MM04. The founders of Studio MM04 also work as Creative Sustainability Consultant and Sustainability Content Consultant at Neonyt.
“Neonyt means thinking and acting in a holistic way – from the order business of our brands to the discussion panels at the Fashionsustain conference, best-practice examples in the Showcases and lifestyle insights during Prepeek down to the trend credentials of our fashion show,” says Bettina Bär, Show Director of Neonyt. “Fashion is more than just business and the same can be said for Neonyt too. Neonyt is all about community. Together we can create synergies and take a closer look at sustainability from all sides.”
Registered and ready to go: Neonyt exhibitors
Neonyt attracts everyone for whom fashion and sustainability are inextricably linked and who wants to change the textile and fashion industry and move it forward. So far, 150 labels have already signed up to exhibit at the January 2022 edition. The list includes Dawn, Dedicated, Deuter, Flamingos’ Life, Givn, Got Bag, KnowledgeCotton Apparel, Kuyichi, LangerChen, Lanius, Mela, Mud Jeans, SKFK and many other internationally relevant brands from the sustainable clothing and accessories sector.
Here, some of the labels reveal in their own words why they are taking part in Neonyt:
Dawn has established new standards for fairness, transparency and environmental awareness in its own factory. For two years in a row, they are the only brand so far to receive 100 out of a possible 100 points in the Fair Wear Foundation’s Brand Performance Check: “After all this time, we are so excited to finally meet our community face to face again,” says Ines Rust, CEO and co-founder of Dawn. “We are eager to see what this edition of Neonyt will bring for Dawn and can’t wait to take part!”
Dedicated from Sweden has set out to create modern casualwear that is produced responsibly: “The entire brand concept of Dedicated is linked to sustainability, which is why Neonyt is the perfect platform for us to convey these values to wholesale customers and partners around the world,” says Johan Graffner, CEO of Dedicated. “The upcoming show in January 2022 will mark the start of a new chapter for conscious fashion and make the topic even more mainstream as a reflection of the most recent global developments.”
Deuter has more than 120 years of experience in outdoor and performance collections. For the rucksack and sleeping bag manufacturer, 360-degree corporate responsibility means acting sustainably throughout the entire production chain. Since 2020, their products have been completely PFC-free: “The climate crisis is the biggest challenge that humanity is currently facing,” says Matthias Herr, Head of Urban Sales at Deuter. “With approximately 1.2 billion tonnes of carbon emissions per year, the textile industry is one of the most polluting industries. Together with other experts from the industry, we see it as our responsibility to bring about lasting change in the textile and fashion world. Neonyt offers us the ideal platform to do that.”
Flamingos’ Life produces only biodegradable sneakers. Their production facilities in Spain are family-managed and they develop the materials themselves – from corn, bamboo, hemp, organic cotton and natural rubber, for example. Each of their shoe collections is associated with a social project: “We use our company to provide a solution to the ecological crisis in which we find ourselves,” says Carlos García, founder and CEO of Flamingos’ Life. “In the past year we’ve been noticing a positive trend: a real change in the behaviour of our customers, who are meanwhile paying a lot more attention to the ecological footprint of their fashion purchases – a development that makes us very happy.”
Givn stands for minimalist design, loving details and a clear signature – combined with innovative, sustainable materials and fair production in Europe: “A big focus in the current collection is on the themes of recycling and circularity,” says Moritz Biel, Founder and CEO of Givn. “We are very much looking forward to being able to enter into personal exchange with our customers again. And in general, we are looking forward to the fair fashion community and to seeing everyone live at Neonyt and exchanging ideas again.”
Got Bag from Mainz is tackling one of the most urgent global environmental problems: plastic makes up around 75% of the waste in our oceans. In Java, off the coast of Indonesia, they collect over 100 tonnes of it a month, which they recycle and turn into rucksacks with a timeless design: “We have a special relationship with Neonyt because it was the first trade fair that Got Bag ever exhibited at as a brand – and it was a huge success for us,” says Dominique Legatzki, Head of Sales at Got Bag. “That’s why our booth will be twice the size that it was back then. As we are a young brand that has grown in the past two years, we are really looking forward to meeting up with retailers and taking them with us on our journey. Along with face-to-face conversations, being able to touch products, try them on and experience them up close is more important than ever and we are motivated to communicate our mission to the world. And we have every confidence in Neonyt.”
KnowledgeCotton Apparel will be bringing Nordic flair and an air of Danish casualness to Frankfurt. Since the label was established in 1969, it has always attached great importance to respecting people, animals and the planet. All its garments are made by certified production partners using sustainable methods and materials: “Our business model, mindset and driving force are all based on our belief in a better future. That is where we come from, what we do and what we will carry on doing – to fight for a better future,” says Mads Mørup, founder and CEO of KnowledgeCotton Apparel. “Initiatives like Neonyt that share our goal of promoting ethical and responsible practices in our industry should always be part of our universe. We are really looking forward to it and grateful that we will be able to reunite with our friends and partners once again.”
Kuyichi started its journey more than 20 years ago in Peru – with the goal of bringing about positive change in the fashion industry. This is demonstrated in their practices, but also in their attitude. Kuyichi believes that the value of a product doesn’t change over time and that clothing should always be fairly priced – for consumers, retailers and for the people who make it. Which explains why they don’t have seasonal collections or clearance sales: “We are delighted to be part of Neonyt again! After the last successful edition, we wouldn’t want to miss it,” says Bjorn Baars, Brand Director at Kuyichi. “For us, Neonyt is a place where sustainable pioneers from the entire industry come together.”
LangerChen creates eco-outerwear with an urban style and a durable design made from sustainable materials that impress with their functionality and high quality: “The world of retail is changing – we are looking forward to Neonyt as an important opportunity for lively exchange,” says Philipp Langer, CEO of LangerChen. “The past two years have shown us that it will no longer be possible to do business without sustainability. The January edition of the show will be an important opportunity for fashion retailers to take stock of where they are currently at.”
Lanius defines sustainability as a forward-looking, ongoing process. This season the focus is on natural, undyed capsule collections combining sustainable materials, discerning design and carefully considered trends: “We’re really looking forward to Neonyt – to the new location as well as seeing all our long-standing customers and making new contacts,” says Yvonne Ley, Head of Sales at Lanius. “It’s so important that we continue to have a sustainable fashion tradeshow here in Germany and that it’s well received and attracts lots of visitors! Without inspiration and personal interaction, there can be no new developments – something that is so crucial in our industry.”
Mela is synonymous with uncompromisingly sustainable textiles that are produced fairly and ecologically. Since the brand was established, they have been producing fairly under the Fairtrade umbrella: “We have been part of the Neonyt community for five years now and are all the more excited to be back again after the long COVID-induced break,” says Henning Siedentopp, Mela’s founder. “The demand for certified, sustainable fashion is continuing to rise and will take centre stage in Frankfurt.”
Mud Jeans is the first circular denim brand in the world and a pioneer in fair factories and circular production. At the end of its lifecycle, every pair of used Mud Jeans can be returned and recycled to make sure it doesn’t end up as landfill. Mud Jeans is also a certified B Corp: “We can’t wait to finally meet our like-minded friends and fellow pioneers at Neonyt again. We all know that we can only make progress if we all pull together,” says Petra Wentholt, Sales Manager at Mud Jeans. “We are here to show that our circular business model is future-proof. With technological innovations, we want to launch our fully circular jeans onto the market soon. And with positive activism we hope to inspire others to take the road to circularity.”
The official list of all labels exhibiting at Neonyt will be published on the website on Tuesday, 23 November 2021.
Registration for professional visitors and press representatives will be activated shortly via the Neonyt website.
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Background information on Messe Frankfurt
Messe Frankfurt is the world’s largest trade fair, convention and event organiser with its own exhibition grounds. The group employs approximately 2,450 people at the headquarters in Frankfurt am Main and in 29 subsidiaries around the world. In 2020, the company generated an annual turnover of around 257 million euros, after closing the year 2019 with an annual turnover of 736 million euros. Even in these difficult times of the COVID-19 pandemic, we still have close ties with our industry sectors all around the globe and serve our customers’ business interests efficiently within the framework of our Fairs & Events, Locations and Services business fields. One of the group’s key USPs is its closely knit global sales network, which extends throughout the world. Our comprehensive range of services – both onsite and online – ensures that customers worldwide enjoy consistently high quality and flexibility when planning, organising and running their events. We are expanding our digital expertise to include new business models. The wide range of services includes renting exhibition grounds, trade fair construction and marketing, as well as personnel and catering services. Headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, the company is owned partly by the City of Frankfurt (60 percent) and partly by the State of Hesse (40 percent).
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