Are 'organic clothes' always organically produced?

Today, more and more people are becoming self aware of their surrounding environment, the production of the nutrients we put into our bodies and the origin of the clothes that we wear. However, unlike our food producers, retailers in the fashion industry can label their clothes and textile as organic without being certified. This means that just because your garment is advertised as ’organic’, it does not guarantee any organic material or only at small volumes. The only way for us consumers to be sure about the organic content, is to buy certified organic products.

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has strict legislation around the certification of organic products under the National Organic Program (NOP) standards. However these standards do not apply to fabrics, only to raw materials and the food production. Therefore, the USDA has put forth that organic labelling of textiles may only be applicable on fabrics which have been certified throughout the entire production process by a third-party. Currently, the USDA has only recognized the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) as a third-party certifier able to accommodate their new ruling.

The clearly defined criteria and transparency behind the GOTS certification have made it the leading textile standard for organic fibre worldwide. It reviews the entire production chain and incorporates both ecological and social criteria within its certification process. With all major markets adhering to one unanimous standards, the textile processors and manufacturers can unite behind a singular organic certification. This also provides the customer with the transparent choice of truly organically sourced garments.

Woolly Hearts have actively selected GOTS certified clothes so that our customers can be confident that they are buying genuine organic clothing. Our manufacturer, Engel, specify the percentage of organic material used in each piece of clothing and this can be reviewed on the product page of each item within all of our collections. All certified GOTS products must contain at least 70% organic fibre and the remaining materials incorporated must be comprised of allowed fibres listed within the standards criteria. This is our way of reassuring each of our customer that they are getting what they are paying for.

 

References:

 

www.ams.usda.gov/rules-regulations/organic/labeling

www.global-standard.org

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