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What You Need to Know About GOTS Certified Cotton

As more and more apparel brands consider themselves sustainable fashion, ethical clothing, and fair production, there enters this gray area of transparency.
What You Need to Know About GOTS Certified Cotton
Photo via CD Studio

As more and more apparel brands consider themselves sustainable fashion, ethical clothing, and fair production, there enters this gray area of transparency. But one brand who anyone can count on to present consumers transparency and deliver a clearly defined set of criteria is the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).

Leading the worldwide textile processing standard for organic fiber is GOTS, along with ecological and social criteria. GOTS certified products are yarns, fabrics, clothes, home textiles, mattresses, and personal hygiene products.

Looking to export fabric and garments with one organic certification accepted by all major markets? GOTS is the process that implements one common standard for processors and manufacturers.

GOTS provides its consumers transparency, allowing consumers to choose accurate organic products sourced from green supply chains. Rather than being confused by the overwhelming market of the so-called sustainable, ethical, and fair brands, they shop from, and they can allow GOTS to tell them.

How can my product be certified?

According to GOTS, textile processing, manufacturing, and trading entities can apply for certification. Textiles processing, manufacturing, and trading entities must submit an initial request and application. The GOTS will then address its Approved Certification Body. Applications are approved by certifiers who implement the GOTS quality assurance system.

What kind of products can be GOTS certified?

Any and all organic textile products can be GOTS certified as long as the product is complete or finished. If those boxes are checked off, the product will be certified and labeled with one of the two GOTS labels: ‘organic’ or ‘made with organic.’

What should I expect to be examined on my applications?

The basis of GOTS certification is multiple things. It consists of an annual on-site inspection of the premises of the processor, manufacturer, or trader. The next step is tracing the organic fiber product flow performed by the processor, manufacturer, or trader.

Expect an assessment of all the inputs and accessories used, including the verification of the wastewater treatment system.

According to GOTS, the certification also monitors social criteria and executes a risk assessment based on quality and residue policy — these are key elements of inspection protocol, according to GOTS. The protocol consists of reconciling purchases and sales volumes of organic textiles.

What will this cost me?

It very much depends on the location, number of locations, size, and type, along with the range of products that are expected to be processed or traded under the certification.

According to GOTS, a rough estimation for one facility ranges from $1,500 to $3,000. In addition to the certification, there is a yearly fee of $150 for each facility inspected for the certification.

What next?

Consumers will be able to look for on-production labeling that GOTS applies to product visibility, whether it be packaging, hangtag, or label. Correct GOTS labeling provides consumers with assurance that the product is GOTS certified.

Why become GOTS certified?

GOTS's purpose is transparency, from harvesting the raw material to the environmental and socially responsible manufacturing to the labeling. Their goal is to provide a credible assurance to the consumer. It is known to be the cleanest certification on the market.

GOTS certified considers everything at hand and is the stamp of approval for your product to ensure trust to your consumer.

For more information and questions about becoming GOTS certified, get in touch with Dhakai at info@dhakai.com.