Last Updated: Saturday, 22 July 2017 06:51
GOTS version 4.0 was due for revision in 2017 and following a comprehensive process let to the Revised Standard Version 5.0 released on 1 March 2017.
The revision process involved a transparent process where multiple stakeholders are encouraged to participate in. The revision process as carried out for current GOTS version functioned extremely well and was appreciated by market participants and in the public.
The approach was once again to set strict and binding requirements for ecological and social parameters while acknowledging the need for practicability in industrial production of a wide range of products. To achieve this goal, stakeholders which operate internationally with expertise in the field of organic production, textile processing, textile chemistry and social criteria and representing the industry, NGOs and consumer interests in our program were invited to contribute to the revision procedure.
The revision process to prepare GOTS Version 5.0 and the accompanying Manual for Implementation as well as the list of international stakeholder organsations to be invited to participate was introduced and discussed at the meetings of the Certifiers Council, the Standards Committee and the Advisory Council.
Standards Committee worked on a first revision draft based on various suggested revisions collected since the release of GOTS Version 4.0
Selected international stakeholder organisations (see list below) were invited to participate in the revision process; the procedure and planned timetable was introduced to them and also published on the GOTS website. Other parties interested in contributing were requested to channel their comments through one of the participating organisations (Advisory Council members, certifier or invited stakeholder).
The GOTS Standards Committee introduced a first revision draft of GOTS 5.0 and the Manual to the Advisory Council members, GOTS-approved certifiers and invited international stakeholder organisations through the installed revision blog.
Advisory Council Members, GOTS-approved certifiers and invited international stakeholder organisations were able to submit inputs/contributions/comments on basis of the 1st revision draft of GOTS and the Manual and post them to the blog. For this purpose a specific form to propose changes/additions to the content of the 1st Revision Draft was available. All participating parties also had the possibility to comment on the contributions provided by the other parties.
The input period for providing requests for changes/additions to the content of the 1st revision draft was 60 days. The input period for providing comments on received contributions was open for two more weeks.
The Standards Committee assessed all contributions and comments, and further consulted (external) experts to work on the 2nd Revision Draft during the period July to September. A second revision draft was finalised.
The GOTS Standards Committee released the 2nd revision draft of GOTS 5.0 and the Manual to the Advisory Council members, GOTS-approved certifiers and invited international stakeholder organisations through the revision blog in addition to a detailed overview file with observations to each individual contribution received and reasoning why or why not the contribution has been taken into account for the 2nd revision draft.
The revision blog was opened for another 30 days in which the participating parties were able to provide final comments to the observations provided by the Standards Committee and/or to the changes made from the 1st to the 2nd draft. No new topics were addressed at this stage of the revision process.
After deliberating and assessing the contributions recieved, the Standards Committee prepared a final and 3rd revision draft of GOTS Version 5.0. The deliberations were captured in a detailed overview file so as to record reasons for inclusion / exclusion of any comments for the Standard and Manual.
The final draft of GOTS Version 5.0 was be sent to the Advisory Council for approval.
The Advisory Council approved of the final draft to be released as a standard during the annual meeting held in February 2017.
GOTS Version 5.0 and the corresponding Manual was released on the GOTS website on 1 March 2017.
Transition period for users of GOTS to fully comply with the new Version of GOTS will be one year.
The approach is to invite stakeholders who operate internationally with expertise in the field of organic production, textile processing, textile chemistry and social criteria and representing the industry, NGOs and consumer interests in our programme.
Specifically, beside the Advisory Council members and the Approved Certifiers, the following provisional list of organisations were invited to participate in the GOTS revision process.
GOTS encourages organisations who are international and representative of any GOTS related aspect to contribute to the process of revision of the Standard. GOTS is unable to entertain requests from individuals or national organisations for the same. We would however suggest that these prospective contributors send in their contributions through any of the mentioned organisations.