Don’t Overdo It: Overproduction in Textile Printing

Nogah Senecky
February 23, 2023

Overproduction is retailers’ worst nightmare. Each year, retailers find themselves throwing away $163 billion worth of inventory. The financial damage doesn’t end there, as we add a long line of manufacturing costs, including utilities, work hours, storage, and more. Finally, in an attempt to sell these unwanted items, some retailers end up flooding the market with discounted clothes that cause the entire market to drop prices. 


What leads to overproduction, and how can retailers avoid it? The following reasons and solutions will answer all your burning questions. 


  1. Supply chain challenges: The past couple of years made it clearer than ever that supply chains can shift dramatically, causing businesses in nearly any field to face difficulties. In an attempt to overcome delays, retailers worldwide stocked up on orders and found themselves facing the opposite problem. Unsold items, also known as ‘dead stock.’ 


A reliable supply chain and the ability to quickly adapt when change occurs are the holy grail in retail. Research shows that reducing supply chain costs from 9% to 4% has the power to double profits. That’s why Kornit’s global fulfillment network was created. We offer clients exclusive access to a pool of vetted, reliable vendors in a variety of markets and verticals. 


  1. Shifting trends: Project Runway’s Heidi Klum taught us that “In fashion, one day you’re in and the next you’re out.” For retailers, producing many items in order to capitalize on short-lived trends can be painful. Nowadays, trends shift much faster, causing overproduction issues to become awfully common. 


Enabling both short runs and high-volume production is a critical part of the solution, which is why this capability was critical when developing Kornit’s MAX technology. But even more important is the ability to print items on demand, after they are sold. This will eliminate dead stock and increase business certainty and profit. 


  1. Human error: Humans make mistakes. In fact, studies find that we make an average of 118 errors per year in the workplace. Errors lead to overproduction for different reasons. An employee might incorrectly calculate the order size, fail to meet the client’s exact specifications, or misuse the production tools. Also, some businesses overproduce items in advance to make up for any potential error that might cause delays. 


Manual printing inevitably leads to more errors because procedures are more complex and labor-intensive. The transition to digital immediately prevents some of the most common errors, offering a sigh of relief for managers and employees alike.    


  1. Production defects and inaccuracies: Sometimes, it’s not humans’ fault that things don’t go as planned. Defects can be the cause of outdated technologies, poor color-matching capabilities, and more. An entire line might prove to be defective after it’s produced, leading to delays and reputational damage. Some businesses take that into account and try to battle the issues using overproduction. This isn’t the best strategy since overproduction has its own price tag. 


Reliable technologies and partners give textile printing companies the best possible advantage: predictability. Being able to know how many items to produce, how many will be sold, and how they will turn out is worth its weight in gold. Give your business the gift of predictable production and leave surprises for other areas in life. To learn more about Kornit’s line of reliable digital textile printing solutions, contact our representatives today. You can count on them to improve your business.