Posted: 10.04.2024 17:29:00

‘Made in Belarus’ equals high quality

Kamvol has incorporated all the best practices available in the global textile industry

In the Soviet years, every third metre of fabric from Minsk Worsted Mill [Kamvol brand] was produced with an honorary pentagon as a quality mark. It was the cloth awarded the USSR Quality Mark that was demonstrated at the Quality Mark: Tradition of the Past and Present mini-exhibition organised at the Palace of Independence at the beginning of the year. The Head of State examined the product together with participants of the meeting on the main directions of work aimed at quality improvement in 2024 and on the Quality Mark of the Republic of Belarus. According to Yulia Grinchik, General Director of Kamvol JSC, the technologies of the 1970s-1980s have been preserved at the plant making it possible to create fabrics in accordance with all the requirements of GOST [the Soviet standard]. Belarusian Kamvol is one of the leading enterprises in the CIS and Europe for the production of a wide range of dress-and-suit pure wool, wool and half-woollen fabrics, which are known and appreciated not only in the native country, but also far beyond its borders. 

Kamvol JSC      Ilya Shvedko

Threads of co-operation

We arrived at Kamvol just on the day when the delegation from Uzbekistan was visiting the Belarusian fabric manufacturer. “We have a lot of projects with this country,” said Yulia Grinchik following the negotiations. “We have been co-operating with Uzbekistan for ten years already, and our relationship has reached new heights recently. The main project ongoing from year to year with increased volumes is the supply of special-purpose fabrics to the departmental structures of Uzbekistan. In 2024, there has been planned a volume that significantly exceeds the supplies of previous years. This is undoubtedly due to the work of the heads of states, who have established positive communication, which gives an impetus to business development of individual enterprises.   
The second area of our collaboration is a project on the supply and use of Belarusian fabrics with low wool content in sewing school uniforms for Uzbekistan students.
Another project that was discussed with Uzbek counterparts at the enterprise is the creation of joint co-operation ties. “We are considering the possibility of sewing products from our fabric on the territory of Uzbekistan by local seamstresses. It will be a mutually beneficial co-operation. Our company will get the necessary volume of products with a reasonable price for the service. In turn, they will see our products, fabric, and raw materials base in Uzbekistan — it is a kind of popularisation on the local market,” stated Yulia Grinchik.  
The above projects are only related to one partner country of Kamvol. 
In total, the company supplies to 12 countries. Thus, 1,519.1 thousand linear metres of fabric were exported last year. In value terms, the export volume of Kamvol’s products amounted to $10.8m.

Yegor Yermalitskiy

Work efficiency

The tasks set by the Kamvol management team for this year are quite ambitious. Yet, Yulia Grinchik, who became the head of the open joint stock company at the beginning of 2024, is confident that the sky is the limit for the enterprise, “‘Made in Belarus’ is already a brand that helps boost sales in world markets. This has been largely facilitated by the policy carried out by our country’s leadership, as well as by all our manufacturers — Belarusians have their own, separate niche, and their own consumer.”
In fact, there are a lot of enterprises in Belarus that have not only been preserved since Soviet times, but also have been brought to a completely new level with the help of state support. Kamvol is one of them.
“Our company is unique in the post-Soviet space. There are simply no analogues to such an enterprise as ours. Even European manufacturers of a similar level, when visiting our production, admire the level of technical equipment we have, as well as the level of cleanliness and comfort that we adhere to. It is very pleasant that our country has such an enterprise,” the company director emphasised. 
“There is no such a technological chain as ours anywhere in the world. Kamvol has incorporated all the best that is available in the global textile industry at present,” stressed Yulia Grinchik.

Yegor Yermalitskiy

Ilya Shvedko

A three-in-one approach 

Kamvol currently has several production sections — carding and spinning, weaving and finishing, and woollen fabric manufacture. The latter is a new one. 
“The investment project was implemented in 2022. By Presidential Decree No. 505 “On setting up the production of woollen fabric at Kamvol JSC” dated December 31st, 2019, funds were allocated to upgrade the woollen fabric manufacture. More than 70 pieces of production equipment were purchased from the best European manufacturers who won in the procurement procedure. The equipment was installed and launched by our own efforts. Our specialists are working on it now, production has begun. We have already started producing those items that came out with a Quality Mark during the Soviet Union times,” explained Artem Smuklavsky, Deputy General Director for Manufacturing.    
In 2024, the woollen fabric production is expected to reach its design capacity of one million linear metres per year. In the meantime, the monthly output is growing by 5–10 percent.
“At the same time, we attract personnel and train them. We compete with Belarusian manufacturing giants in the labour market. Colleges today cannot provide such a large number of trained personnel; therefore, we have created a training system from scratch. We assign a specialist mentor to a person who wants to work here. The training lasts from one month to six months. After that, we set an apprentice exam. We can do it earlier if the apprentice has learnt the programme faster,” Artem Smuklavsky informed.  
In addition, the competence centre plans to conduct corporate training for employees of the enterprise.



Yegor Yermalitskiy

Control at all stages

All achievements of the company are inextricably linked with the high quality of its products. It is worth noting that Kamvol has received a lot of awards for them, including international ones. The quality system is regulated by 40 standards of the enterprise, five working instructions developed taking into account basic requirements for the quality management system. The product quality is strictly supervised there.
“We work ahead of the curve, controlling the raw materials, chemicals and dyes supplied to us. After all, the quality of raw materials affects greatly the quality of the final product. Everything must comply with the technical regulations requirements — in the same way as our released products comply with the requirements of GOST and the Technical Regulations of the Customs Union (TR CU),” underlined Evgenia Misuno, Head of Quality Department at Kamvol JSC. 
Finished products are carefully checked before being released from production. Firstly, their visual control is carried out for compliance with GOST. Secondly, they are tested according to the physical and mechanical parameters in a chemical laboratory.
The quality of the finished product is monitored by the quality controller of the technical control department, while process engineers and laboratory specialists are responsible for the quality in manufacturing. In addition, each employee constantly evaluates the process, since everyone is personally interested in producing high-quality products.
Before leaving the company, we could not but ask the general director about the Kamvol product that will compete for the State Quality Mark.
“I think it is fabric because it is our main product. As for the fabric composition and density, this is yet to be decided. We are currently busy in development, and then we will choose one of the options with an expert opinion,” Yulia Grinchik shared the plans.

By Yulia Statkevich