Certification and Labels

Textile Certification, a brief overview

Global Organic Textile Standard

Global Organic Textile Standard

The Global Organic Textile Standard (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. www.global-standard.org

Fair Wear Foundation

Fair Wear Foundation

Fair Wear Foundation (FWF) is a European initiative, which strives for fair  working conditions in the garment industry worldwide. FWF verifies effective implementation of the code of conduct by its member companies and their
suppliers.
The member companies commit themselves to respecting the following labour standards:
• Employment is freely chosen
• No discrimination in employment
• No exploitation of child labour
• Freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining
• Payment of a living wage
• No excessive working hours
• Safe and healthy working conditions
• Legally binding employment relationship
By the end of 2010, there will be 65 companies as members of the Fair Wear Foundation (FWF), amongst others Switcher, B&C, Continental Clothing, Earthpositive, Stanley & Stella

Fairtrade

Fairtrade

The Fairtrade organization guarantees the payment of a stable and fair price to cotton farmers for their cotton never under the market price that allow them to cover their production costs.
The fair trade premium is used to improve living and working conditions of their cooperative. The Fairtrade organizations supervise and verifie these community projects. For more infos see http://www.fairtrade.net/

PETA Approved Vegan

peta approved vegan 200a

The "PETA-Approved Vegan" label marks fashion and textiles as free from animal ingredients. If you are interested in ethical treatment of animals, you can identify products that no animal had to suffer for at a glance.

More about PETA-Approved Vegan

Soil Association

Soil Association

The Soil Association  is the UK’s largest organic certification body, responsible for certifying over 80% of all organic products sold in the country. Since 1973 they have built up extensive practical experience and provide unrivalled support before, during and after certification. It developed the world’s first organic certification system in 1967 - standards which have since widened to encompass agriculture, aquaculture, ethical trade, food processing, forestry, health & beauty, horticulture and textiles. Today it certifies over 80% of produce in the UK.

www.soilassociation.org

Carbon Trust

Carbon Trust

The Carbon Trust is a not-for-profit company with the mission to accelerate the move to a low carbon economy, providing specialist support to business and the public sector to help cut carbon emissions, save energy and commercialise low carbon technologies.  By stimulating low carbon action they contribute to key UK goals of lower carbon emissions, the development of low carbon businesses, increased energy security and associated jobs.
www.carbontrust.co.uk

 

WRAP Worldwide responsible Apparel Production

WRAP Worldwide responsible Apparel Production

WRAP is an independent, non-profit organization dedicated to the certification of lawful, humane and ethical manufacturing throughout the world. The Worldwide Responsible Apparel Production Principles are basic standards that address labor practices, factory conditions, and environmental and customs compliance. The WRAP Principles received the public endorsement of the AAMA Board of Directors in 1998. More recently, the Principles have been endorsed by groups representing apparel manufacturers from 18 countries around the world.
www.wrapapparel.org

Oeko-Tex

Oeko-Tex

Oeko-Tex Standard 100 is a standardized worldwide testing and certification system for textile products at all stages of processing. This label shows that the model complies to the Oeko-Tex Standard 100 criteria. The pollutant tests cover
substances which are prohibited and regulated by law, chemicals which are known to be harmful to health and parameters for health protection. www.oeko-tex.com

Organic Exchange

Organic Exchange

The Textile Exchange, formerly known as The Organic Exchange, is a non-profit business organization focused on facilitating the growth of a global organic cotton industry. The members of the Organic Exchange, including Coop, Hess Natur,  Anvil have decided to integrate organic cotton into their product offerings.
www.organicexchange.org

Overview and evaluation of various certificates in the textile sector

quoted from  getchanged.net

More and more consumers want to consume ethically. Those who want to buy fashion with a clear conscience will find many fair alternatives. However, most consumers are confused and overwhelmed because there are now more than 100 sustainability standards and quality seals that offer more ecology and fair working conditions.

On behalf of the Upper Austrian Chamber of Labour, BSD Consulting and GET CHANGED! have investigated what lies behind the colourful signs and seals and evaluated nine of the most widespread independent sustainability standards for fair fashion. The comprehensive standard comparison is based on three core questions: What do the standards cover? How comprehensively do the standards cover social and environmental issues? How credible and effective are the standards?

bewertung labels

Results of the standard assessment

What do the standards cover? No standard covers social AND environmental aspects satisfactorily at all stages of the supply chain. If a fashion company wants to credibly cover both areas along the entire supply chain using sustainability standards, then several standards must be combined.

To what extent do the standards cover social and environmental issues? Although almost all of the sustainability standards examined cover social aspects (ILO core labour standards, wages, factory safety, etc.), very few do so comprehensively. The FWF scores best. BSCI, GOTS, IVN Best and FLO Certified Cotton only score on average in the social standard area, above all because there is no serious effort to implement living wages in ready-to-wear clothing.

How credible and effective are the standards? Seven criteria were evaluated: (1) Governance & involvement of stakeholders in setting standards, (2) transparency, (3) traceability, (4) control & verification, (5) complaints system, (6) management systems, (7) training. Only one sustainability standard - the FWF - is recommendable. All other standards have even greater shortcomings. CmiA, Bluesign and ÖkoTex 100 are particularly patchy here.

Conclusion

In order to ensure high social and ecological standards in all three important production steps, a company needs a combination of sustainability standards. According to this assessment, the FWF, GOTS, IVN Best and FLO Certified Cotton standards are particularly recommendable. In combination, they cover the entire chain. In the production and further processing of synthetic fibres, Bluesign's standard scores well in the area of "ecological aspects", but there are considerable shortcomings in the area of "credibility / effectiveness".

The results in the "Credibility / Effectiveness" area show that a fashion company cannot rest on its sustainability standard or certificate alone. In order to make production more sustainable, a fashion company must develop a comprehensive strategy that allows the social and ecological criteria defined in the standards to be implemented comprehensively and over the long term.