Bulk Production Term by Apparel Search - Terms of Interest to the Fashion Industry
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In the fashion industry, what is the meaning when someone says "bulk production"?
Possibly, you have heard someone ask you, "is that sample from bulk production?". Or possibly you have been working with a factory and they have informed you that the delivery schedule is getting very tight and they urgently need your approval to move to bulk production. If you were not sure what they meant, I will now try to give you the answer. Bulk production is simply the "actual" production. So, when we reference bulk production it means actual production or final production. Bulk production is the final product being produced based on the actual order requirements.
When we refer to Bulk Fabric (or bulk yardage), that is regarding actual production fabric. It is NOT sample yardage made on sample machinery. The bulk fabric is the actual fabric production with all final yarns, final colors, and final finishing. It is the final and actual production that is planned to be shipped. It is not an experiment... It is the product that the mill is planning to ship to their customer.
Bulk production has the same meaning for every single component. For example, if we are ordering blue yarn for our fabric we will need to see lab dips of the yarn before approving a final color. The lab dips (sample yarns) are NOT bulk yarns. Only after we give the final color approval, the factory will then produce bulk yarn. That yarn will later be used to produce the bulk fabric.
The garment factories also submit samples to buyers before moving to final production (bulk production). In the product development process, many factors are reviewed by the development team before an order can move to bulk production. Usually buyers require pre-production samples so that they can view the clothing to make sure that everything looks to be correct. They will check fit, label placement, fabric colors, ticketing, etc. If all meets specifications, the buyers will give the factory approval to move to bulk production. After production begins, the factory will typically be required to provide the buyer "bulk samples". These are samples that are pulled directly from the shipment. These bulk samples should be an exact representation of the items that the factory intends to ship.
Essentially, when a factory moves to bulk production it is full systems go... They are moving to actual production. Also referenced as final production.
By the way, make sure that your bulk production is correct. If not, you will get a chargeback.
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You may also want to read about In-Process Quality Control.
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