A Japanese government-sponsored initiative known as Cool Biz has encouraged companies to allow employees to dress more casually, including shedding the traditional suit coat and tie, in an effort to save energy for the past several summers. This year, however, in the aftermath of the March 11 disaster and resulting decline in electrical power production, an updated version of the energy initiative, called Setsuden (power-conserving) Biz, encouraged office people to replace their business attire with genuine loose-fitting, built-for-comfort casual clothing.
A wide variety of special materials were used to produce extra-comfortable clothing, including sweat-absorption, quick-drying and heat-shielding materials for innerwear, sportswear, uniforms and fashion wear this summer. Teijin Fibers Ltd., the Teijin Group’s polyester fiber company, did its part by offering functional materials with special properties, including textiles made of fibers that expand when moist and contract when dry, helping to increase ventilation and disperse steam, and curtain materials with heat-shielding properties.
The need to conserve energy will remain high in Japan during cooler times of the year. Teijin Fibers is already working to help save energy further, this time with heat-retentive, thermal-insulating and wind-blocking materials for clothing. Based on continuing interest in saving energy in Japan, including by individuals, the company is projecting sales of the above and other functional fiber materials and products to grow approximately 10 percent in the 2011 autumn and winter seasons.