What is GOTS organic cotton?

Maaike de Boer
Maaike de Boer
  • Updated

GOTS organic cotton

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Sustainable fashion, ethical clothing, fair production have many meanings. The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) has a clearly defined set of criteria and is transparent.

GOTS is the worldwide leading textile processing standard for organic fibres, including ecological and social criteria, backed up by independent certification of the entire textile supply chain. GOTS certified final products may include fibre products, yarns, fabrics, clothes, home textiles, mattresses, personal hygiene products, as well as food contact textiles and more.

Having one common standard means textile processors and manufacturers can export their fabrics and garments with one organic certification that is accepted in all major markets. This transparency also gives consumers the power to choose truly organic products sourced from green supply chains.

The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) was developed by leading standard setters to define world-wide recognised requirements for organic textiles. From the harvesting of the raw materials, environmentally and socially responsible manufacturing to labelling, textiles certified to GOTS provide a credible assurance to the consumer.

GOTS was founded by four well-reputed organisations: Organic Trade Association (OTA, USA), Internationaler Verband der Naturtextilwirtschaft (IVN, Germany), The Soil Association (UK) and Japan Organic Cotton Association (JOCA, Japan). Two of these (IVN and JOCA) are textile industry organisations, while the other two (OTA and Soil Association) are organic organisations rooted in organic agriculture and food. Together, they hold extensive experience in promoting 'organic' and all had developed individual processing standards for organic textiles. GOTS came about from the desire to harmonise these standards so that they were internationally recognised. The GOTS organisation draws on the advice of, and input from, other relevant international stakeholder organisations and experts for regular standard updates.

From Field to Fashion: The GOTS quality assurance system is based on on-site inspection and certification of the entire textile supply chain (processing and trade).

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Operators from post-harvest handling up to garment making, as well as wholesalers (including exporters and importers), have to undergo an on-site annual inspection cycle and must hold a valid certification in order for the final products to be labelled as GOTS certified.

Any claim to be compliant to GOTS as the worldwide leading textile processing standard is invalid until an independent Certification Body has checked – through a set of inspection methods – and attested – through formally issued certification documents – that a product and its processor, manufacturer or trader is, indeed, GOTS compliant.

Want to know even more? GOTS Standard website

 

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