The high end knitwear production base – Changping, Dongguan
Changping is a neglected area, many people don’t know it is a high end knitwear production base. Usually people only know Dalang is a global sweater production base as Dalang has large number of export orders but in normal quality. However, Changping is the high end knitwear production base which produce sweaters for global high-end brands and Shenzhen high-end lady’s wear brands.
Formation of Changping’s production base
With the opening of the train from Changping to Hong Kong in 1994, it only takes one hour train to Changping from Hong Kong’s Hung Hom station which made many Hong Kong’s yarn companies set up factories and trading companies in Changping. Hong Kong’s technicians and administrators came to Changping too. They trained many workers in the following decades, and trained them to become the technician and administrators in the local factories.
A large number of local business men bought machines to support production for Hong Kong’s factories since the 1990s. At the same time, they also employed technicians and managers from large factories. It had hundreds of people in a factory in this period because of low labor cost, and had hundreds of factories with thousands of workers.
The global financial crisis struck the knitwear business in 2008. Hong Kong’s knitwear trade order was decreasing which caused many factories are closed. 90% of factories were back to Hong Kong or transformation. As equipment and the labor cost was increasing, there were 90% of locals no longer managed small factories and transformation for rent the factories. The technicians and managements who worked in factories undertook some orders. One part is Hong Kong’s foreign trade orders, the other part is domestic brand or wholesale market’s orders. Some bosses survived in this increasingly competitive market as they upgraded machinery and craftsmanship to improve production efficiency and they worked hard.
Shenzhen’s factories moved to Dongguan which caused rent increase in Changping in 2020. The original small and medium-sized factories (thousands of square meters of the whole factory) were sublet into one factory on one floor. The factories was become small and refined. Some had hundreds of square meters, and some had thousands of square meters. Small but quality could always be maintained. This is also very strange.(We will discuss the inheritance of technology separately later)
Distribution of Changping’s production bases
It mainly distributed in Jingmei village, Tangjiao village, Yuanshanbei village, Huanzhuli village, Sukeng village and etc. These villages add up to about 1,000 to 2,000 factories. But most are small factories. There are only about a hundred of factories that really have the strength to produce foreign trade orders. These factories will fewer and fewer with the increase of production costs.
Quality advantages of Changping’s sweater production bases
Handmade quality has always been the practice of inheriting Hong Kong. It mainly implements the quality work since 20 years ago.
Fine gauge technology leads the world. 16gg and 18gg can be produced in Jiangzhe area, but its linking is difficult in Jiangzhe, it needs link by 22gg or 24gg which requires technicians to have good eyesight and skilled gestures. There are 30% of linking workers are 30-40 years old in Changping, which is the best age for linking.
Complex technology of sweater can be produced in Dalang or other towns, but it can’t be recognized by high-end customers. A sweater with print, machine embroidery, hand made and etc. need to be completed in collaboration with several suppliers. Changping is well equipped with high-end technology, these technicians can understand and achieve high quality requirements. It may complete one of the craftsmanship in the other areas but cannot make if it has various processes in a sweater.
The concept of high quality has been deeply rooted in the hearts of knitwear technicians in Changping Town. They almost don’t recognize the quality of Dalang. Consistently implement their own pursuit of quality. It is the wish of most technicians in Changping to make every sweater well.
So is Fine Knitting’s technicians, we have inherited the quality concept of technicians of Hong Kong for decades in every department. Every sweater we produce conveys our faith, producing the high end quality.