GOTS Press Release - UK +++ Number of GOTS certified facilities increase 21% to 4,642 in 2016 +++ More than 1.4 million workers reported +++ Annual Report 2016 released


Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS):

Number of GOTS certified facilities increase 21% to 4,642 in 2016 +++ More than 1.4 million workers reported +++ Annual Report 2016 released

Christopher Stopes
+++44 7966 463 489

For Immediate Release    
London (2nd May 2017)

The number of facilities certified to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) demonstrated a substantial increase, from 3,814  facilities in 2015 to 4,642 facilities in 2016. GOTS certified facilities are now located in 63 (68 in 2015) countries around the world. Growth is continuously, evenly spread across all market segments including the mass market and the big brands.
GOTS certification covers the processing of organic fibres along the entire supply chain from field to finished product.

Countries or regions with the largest increase in GOTS certification in 2016 are (in rank order): Bangladesh (+121), China (+68), Italy (+54), Germany (+41); India (+47) and Pakistan (+30).  The top ten countries in terms of total number of certified entities were: India (1488), Turkey (423), Germany (347), Bangladesh (331), China (269), Italy (195), Pakistan (172), Portugal (96), Korea (61) and Japan (58).

"The significant growth in numbers of GOTS certified facilities shows the willingness of more and more decision makers not only to drive change by complying with the strict GOTS criteria but also to prove this change by undergoing an independent third party certification", notes Herbert Ladwig, GOTS Managing Director.

To date the 18 GOTS accredited independent Certification Bodies report more than 1.4 million people in 4354 (out of the actual 4642) working in GOTS certified facilities.

"The increasing market acceptance is a result that GOTS delivers solutions for sustainability based problems for both, business need for risk management and credibility and consumers need for transparency", says Claudia Kersten, GOTS Director Marketing and Finance.

New GOTS Version 5
For GOTS 2016 was a revision year resulting in the release of GOTS Version 5.0 on 1st March 2017. The key changes in brief: The use of Viscose and Modal (additional fibre content) is now restricted to 10% (25% for sportswear and socks).  Lyocell fibre made from certified organic of FSC sources may still be used up to 30% because of its more sustainable manufacturing processes. For the first time GOTS will allow “Combined Products” such as prams with textile fabrics, bassinets, car seats or furniture with textile fabric upholstery to have certified and labelled textile components. Regarding the GOTS social criteria an explicit section on Ethical Business Behaviour including a corruption ban was added, based on the UN Global Compact Principles. The mandatory GOTS Social Compliance Management System for the first time includes guidance on the use of tools such as SAI Social Fingerprint™ to help companies measure and improve their social performance. GOTS Version 5.0, the Manual for Implementation Version 5.0 and a list of relevant changes can be found on

New GOTS Representatives
In 2016 seven regional Representatives were working on GOTS promotion. Three new Regional Representatives have been appointed: Lina Pfeifer in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, Lori Wyman in North America and Elif Yara?ik was appointed the first Regional GOTS Representative in Turkey. Given the fact that Turkey is the country with the second most GOTS certified facilities worldwide it is a very important sourcing market.

Detailed information about 2016 GOTS activities can be found in the GOTS Annual Report 2016, available for download from today on

Growth in the UK market for organic textiles in 2016 substantially exceeded that for organic food.
Sales of Soil Association certified organic textiles increased by +30% to £28 million (€33 million) in 2016, almost double the growth rate seen in 2015. Personal care products showed the strongest
growth, with clothing, home textiles and babywear also reporting increasing market share. GOTS is a supporter of the UK Sustainable Clothing Action Plan group, which aims to reduce the environmental
footprint of the clothing sector in the UK. Signatories account for more than 50% of the UK clothing market. They commit to taking improvement actions, one option is to use organic cotton.

ABOUT GOTS: GOTS is the stringent voluntary global standard for the entire post-harvest processing (including spinning, knitting, weaving, dyeing and manufacturing) of apparel and home textiles made with organic fibre (such as organic cotton and organic wool), and includes both environmental and social criteria. Key provisions include a ban on the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), highly hazardous chemicals (such as azo dyes and formaldehyde), and child labour, while requiring strong social compliance management systems and strict waste water treatment practices.

GOTS was developed by leading international standard setters - Organic Trade Association (U.S.), Japan Organic Cotton Association, International Association Natural Textile Industry (Germany), and Soil Association (UK) which formed an International Working Group to define globally-recognised requirements that ensure the organic status of textiles. GOTS is a non-profit operation. For more information on the Global Organic Textile Standard, please see


Global Organic Textile Standard