North American GOTS representative, Lori Wyman was a panelist on the Sustainable Standards segment of the Sustainability and Textiles - New Models seminar at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York City in June. This is an annual four-day series of lectures, panels, and hands-on workshops focusing on sustainability and technology in fashion and textiles. It was attended by 43 participants who were designers, educators, and others involved in creation or production of fashion and textiles, as well as retailers from several countries.
Also on the panel were Katina Boutis, the sustainability director at Loomstate, which is a GOTS Certified company in the U.S. and Anna Czerwinska, the head of marketing and communication from the International OEKO-TEX® Association. Each panelist gave a presentation, then there was an engaging question and answer period. Firstly, people wanted to know what is the difference between the GOTS and OEKO-TEX standards. For the most part, these two groups work hand-in-hand as the testing’s division of OEKO-TEX provides a great benchmark for allowable inputs in the GOTS standard. Secondly, Ms. Wyman pointed out that GOTS is a standard is applied only to natural fibers and verifies organic practices from the farm, through the entire supply chain to the end product. Whereas OECLO-TEX standards may apply to synthetic and genetically modified based fibers. Ms. Boutis described her company’s journey to make uniforms from organically sourced cotton and the benefits of being certified to GOTS.
From April 19-21, ECOCERT China held a three day seminar on organic textiles in Xiamen, China. Felicia Shi, GOTS Representative for Greater China was invited to give a lecture as the first speaker on the first day.
Felicia firstly introduced the overview to organic textiles, then she talked about the latest market trends of organic textiles such as how brands embed sustainability as their core strategy, after that, she gave a brief introduction about GOTS standard, what's more, she presented the lasted updates at GOTS for example the promotional activities of GOTS worldwide and GOTS China. In addition, she illustrated the organic labelling globally, last but not the least, she showed how GOTS licensing and Labelling work for the facilities.
Over 50 participants attended the seminar, including brands such as C&A, H&M, as well as OCS and GOTS certified processors and manufacturers.
To be held twice on Tuesday, April 11, 2017:
Learn more about US regulations in organic textile labeling, different kinds of organic claims, and how the Organic Content Standard and Global Organic Textile Standard can be used to help support your communication on product.
The Organic Trade Association’s Vice President of Regulatory & Technical Affairs, Gwendolyn Wyard will cover the US’s regulations for organic labeling, with a focus on textiles. Lori Wyman, the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) North American Representative, will explain GOTS and what claims can be made for GOTS certified organic products. Textile Exchange’s Ashley Gill will cover the Organic Cotton Standard (OCS) and raw material content claims.
Link to this free event: https://www.ota.com/programs-and-events/ota-calendar
India office of Danish Brand BESTSELLER organized a one day event titled ‘BESTSELLER Mill Day on Sustainability’ on 24th March 2017 in New Delhi, India. Mr. Sumit Gupta, GOTS Deputy Director Standards Development & Quality Assurance, was invited to speak about the “Global Organic Textile Standard - Introduction & Technical Criteria”.
Mr. Gupta explained the technical aspects of the Standard related to fibre usage, dyes/ chemical approval, environment, social compliance, labelling, packaging, etc. He also explained the traceability system in GOTS and Transaction Certificates (TC). He further told about the option of covering multiple shipments in a single TC and the newly introduced exclusion for wholly owned subsidiaries of a retailer.
He opined that brands can use GOTS as a benchmark to build a sustainable supply chain. They can either encourage their existing suppliers to follow GOTS or can choose from existing GOTS certified suppliers, that are listed on GOTS Public Database.
The audience comprised mainly of garmenting companies and wet processing units from India.
Amity University, Noida, India organized a two day National Conference on “Shaping India 2030: Sustainable Development and Socio-economic Perspectives and Challenges” on 23rd -24th March 2017. Mr. Sumit Gupta, GOTS Deputy Director Standards Development & Quality Assurance, chaired the technical session on ‘Textile Industry & SDGs’.
Mr. Gupta explained how sustainability standards like GOTS can be used as a tool by businesses to meet United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. He also told that more than 11 SDGs are covered by GOTS and by implementing the standard companies can make meaningful contribution to society and SDGs at the same time. Other speakers in the session included Ms. Mona Gupta – Advisor, Practitioner & Educator; Mr. Vinay Singh- Manager Compliance, RCM Group and Mr. Rajib Saraf, Manager Operations, Himanshu Apparels.
The audience comprised mainly of students from the Amity University and other institutes in the region.
GOTS specifically prohibits the use of any chemical input that releases carcinogenic aryl amine compounds MAK III categories 1,2,3,4. (Section 2.3.1, excerpt below).
|Inputs (e.g. azo dyes and pigments) releasing carcinogenic arylamine compounds (MAK III, category 1,2,3,4)||Prohibited|
This includes aniline which is classified as MAK III Category 4 chemical.
GOTS recognises that even when material is produced to GOTS standards, there could be the possibility of unintended or unknown sources of contamination, which is why residue limits for certain chemicals have been specified for GOTS Goods under Section 2.4.15, see excerpt below :
Arylamines with carcinogenic properties (amine-releasing azo dyes MAK III, category 1,2,3)
Aniline (MAK III, category 4)
< 20 mg/kg
< 100 mg/kg
Test method : EN 14362-1 and -3
Worldwide, most institutions have similar views on aniline.
Aniline is known to possess slight contact sensitising potential.
There is no legal or scientific reference or study related safe limit values for aniline. However, it is logical that residual unintended limit values for aniline should be higher than those for chemicals classified under MAK III Categories 1,2 and 3. Based on these facts and discussions with experts, the GOTS Standards Committee decided to define a realistic and appropriate residue limit keeping in mind aniline’s hazard potential and practicability.
Given these circumstances, GOTS feels that their residual, unintended use limit of 100 mg/kg, with current understanding and knowledge is adequate to ensure safety of consumers and in line with its larger philosophy of sustainability.
Please download the position paper as pdf here.