Sweden’s textile care professionals gather after two-year hiatus

6 December 2021

Report by Daniel Karrholt, Sveriges Tvätteriförbund

It was a crisp fresh November morning when the Swedish Textile Service Association (Sveriges Tvätteriförbund) gathered once again for an autumn meeting after a break of two years. One hundred and thirty delegates met at the Hotel Blique by Nobis, designed by Sigurd Lewerentz, which opened in 2019 with generous areas, a roof terrace and an optimal location between Vasastaden and in the adjacent Hagastaden.

WELCOME BUZZ: A busy area with 25 exhibitors was part of the event. Pictured, Anna Johansson and Anja Augustsson, SoCom Scandinavia

A welcome buzz from the exhibition area heralded the arrival of chairman Jan Kluge who gathered everyone for the first presentation with Sven Otto Littorin, the business profile and former minister and, just a few days previously, a new grandfather. It was exciting to listen to all kinds of stories from him and his thoughts about the future. 

After Littorin it was the turn of Maria Ström –  Wargön Innovation/The Loop Factory – one of the driving forces behind Texchain3 which is a government-backed project with the aim of creating new cross-industry value chains that make it possible to industrially use and further refine textile residual streams. Among the project participants are Blåkläder, Rikstvätt Sverige, Martinson, Region Skåne, Samhall, Västra Götalandsregionen and Sveriges Tvätteriförbund.

A long-awaited lecture was given by Jonas Olaison. Sustainability manager at Textilia. Olaison was one of the sustainability award winners in 2020 and talked about Sustainable Textile Service 2.0 and what the industry  needs to do to take the next step.

Stina Jansson, marketing manager at BP Football, talked about social sustainability, what it leads to and the purpose behind it. Jansson has been at BP since 2017 and is responsible for marketing, communication, CSR and partners and runs the work for social sustainability within the association. BP has been cooperating with Tvätteriförbundet since 2015.

Most laughs came not surprisingly when Christer Bäcker, Tvätteriförbundet´s energetic energy adviser, took the podium. With his expertise, he guided us through the jungle of considerations that exist to get an optimal energy mix.

ETSA’s Elena Lai – secretary general of the association for a year now – gave a colourful introduction to how European lobbying works and how we, together with European and American sister associations, can make a decisive difference.

Richard Herrey, the first lecturer to take the podium after lunch, had a story that was something out of the ordinary. His father was a big influence and the family was, among other things, best distributor for the leading newspaper in Gothenburg, Göteborgs-Posten while other various ventures included the starting a soft ice cream operation in Spain and performing clown sketches at circuses.

Herrey went to Los Angeles, got to dance in the Fame TV show and was ‘discovered’. The rest is, as we say, history. After a win in the European Song Contest 1984 with his brothers with the song Diggi-Loo Diggi-Ley’. it was Hard Rock Café and Mix Megapol radio station for him. When Herrey pointed out that he did not drink alcohol when recruited to the restaurant world, he received the answer: "No problem, we have others who can.”

Herrey’s speaker gift was K-G Bergström's new book Distress and Death – the Russian Occupation of Norrland (Northern Sweden) 1809.  Bergström is Sweden's most well-known political journalist. In a sheer coincidence, Bergström then took over and gave us a razor-sharp analysis of the political situation in our country. (In reality, that bit was actually planned.)

At the end of the day, the event wound up with coffee and dialogue among the delegates. I


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