In the 1980s, producers of Eco-friendly textiles generally worked with organic food associations. However, they found that the food association was impractical for textile producers because, although the growing and harvesting of food and fiber crops were similar, the processing of fibers in preparation to make fabric varied widely.
In 2002, at the Intercom Conference in Dusseldorf, Germany, a workshop with representatives of organic cotton producers, the textile industry, consumers, standard organizations, and certificates discussed the need for a harmonized and world-wide recognized organic textile standard. As a result of this workshop, the “International Working Group on Global Organic Textile Standard” (IWG) was founded, with an aim to work on the codification of various regional approaches and to develop a set of global standards.
In 2006, their work was published as the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS). The main achievement of this group was the ability to compromise and to find a general agreement for points that were considered to be ‘non-negotiable’.
GOTS aim is to define a Universal Standard for Organic Fabrics which monitors it from harvesting the raw materials, through its environmental & socially responsible manufacturing up to its labeling, in order to provide assurance to its consumer.
This standard is applicable to fiber products, yarns, fabrics & clothes and covers their production, processing, manufacturing, packaging, labeling, exportation, importation, and distribution.
EVOLUTION OF GOTS (GLOBAL ORGANIC TEXTILE STANDARDS) REVISION HISTORY:
Year 2002– Formation of International Working Group (IWG) on Global Organic Textile Standard.
Year 2006– GOTS certification system gets started.
Year 2008– Version 2.0 of GOTS and the GOTS label are introduced to public.
Year 2011– Version 3.0 of GOTS is published.
Year 2014– Version 4.0 of GOTS is published.
Year 2017– Version 5.0 of GOTS is published.
Year 2020– Version 6.0 of GOTS is published.
APPLICABILITY (WHICH ORGANIZATION CAN AVAIL GOTS CERTIFICATION):
This Certification can be availed by organizations that deal in Textile processing, Manufacturing, and Trading.
FOCUS POINTS- GLOBAL ORGANIC TEXTILE STANDARDS:
These are few of the focus points considered in Global Organic Textile Standards:
- The flow of the GOTS goods & its bookkeeping.
- Processing & Storage system.
- Separation & Identification system.
- Areas identification that causes the risk to organic integrity.
- Chemical & accessories used in processes.
- Wastewater treatment system.
- Social responsibility.
- Operators risk assessment of contamination.
- Residue management.
BENEFITS OF GLOBAL ORGANIC TEXTILE STANDARDS:
- Risk Reduction.
- Efficiency & Productivity.
- Innovation & Differentiation.
- Sustainable Market development.
GLOBAL ORGANIC TEXTILE STANDARDS IMPLEMENTATION BY PQSmitra:
PQSmitra adopts a result-oriented approach for effective system implementation at the organization. The simple and practical method of system implementation help organizations to enhance business performance and sustainability. PQSmitra offers 100% documentation support to achieve successful certification in addition to enhanced business performance. The implementation process is described below:
- Initial visits and review of the existing system.
- Gap analysis and planning for the documentation (Records and Procedures).
- Training and Hand holding/ support for implementation.
- Internal audit for verification of the implemented system.
- Management review.
- Certification Audit.
- Closure of non-conformities.
- GOTS certificate awarded to the Organization.
REFERENCE STANDARDS FOR GOTS:
- North American Fiber Standard – Organic Trade Association (USA).
- Guidelines ‘Naturtextil IVN Zertifiziert’ – International Association Natural Textile Industry (Germany).
- Standards for Processing and Manufacture of Organic Textiles – Soil Association (England).
- EKO Sustainable Textile Standard – Control Union Certifications (formerly SKAL).
- Standards for Organic Textiles – Ecocert (France).
- Organic Textile Standard – ICEA (Italy).
- Standards for Organic Textiles – ETKO (Turkey).
- Organic Fiber Standards – Oregon Tilth (USA).
- Standards for Processing of Organic Textile Products – OIA (Argentina).
- IFOAM family of standards, EEC 834/2007, USDA NOP.