GOTS Version 6.0 released: References to OECD Guidelines & Assessment of Living Wage Gap
Released 19th March 2020
The new GOTS version 6.0 will be released this Thursday, 19th March 2020. The approach of the revision process, undertaken every three years, is to set stricter ecological and social criteria while maintaining relevance of the Global Organic Textile Standard. International Stakeholders with expertise in the field of organic production, textile processing, textile chemistry, and social criteria and industry representatives, NGOs and consumers contributed to the new version 6.0, throughout the last year in several consultation rounds. The complete list of stakeholders invited to contribute and the revision timetable are available here.
GOTS defines world-wide recognized requirements that ensure third party certified organic status of textiles with full traceability from field to finished product. With this aim in mind, key requirements such as certified organic fibre content, the general ban on toxic and harmful chemicals, conventional cotton and virgin polyester as well as the social compliance management have been maintained, while other criteria became stricter.
When it comes to GOTS Environmental Criteria, Product Stewardship and Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) requirements have been introduced for approved chemical formulators.
The newly released test protocol ISO / IWA 32 for GM screening of cotton serves as the recognized screening method of GMO presence.
The new version withdraws the relaxation for the additional regenerated and virgin synthetic fibre content for Socks, Leggings and Sportswear.
Additionally, Product Quality Standards for Colourfastness and Dimensional Stability are now mandatory. Specific new requirements for Tampons and Food Contact Textiles have been included.
Regarding GOTS Social Criteria GOTS included more dynamic elements: Certified Entities will now have to calculate the gap of actually paid wages to 'Living Wages' (according to recognized calculations methods). Furthermore, they will be encouraged to work towards closing this gap. Specific references to OECD Due Diligence Guidance and Good Practice Guidance for Social Criteria and Risk Assessment as well as Ethical Business Practises have been explicitly included.
"The GOTS Version 6 progressively furthers our Mission. Pursuant to one of the most prolific comment periods in its revision history, GOTS continues to mature in scope, following keen consultations within the GOTS Standards Committee, external experts and inputs from stakeholders. I am delighted with the outcome of these deliberations and am confident that GOTS will continue to remain in the leading position that it is." Rahul Bhajekar, GOTS Managing Director and Coordinator Standards Committee.
The transition period for users of GOTS to fully comply with the new version will be one year. The Standard Version and the corresponding Implementation Manual, as well as the list of changes, are available on the website and can be downloaded.
About GOTS: GOTS is the stringent voluntary global standard for the entire post-harvest processing (including spinning, knitting, weaving, dyeing and manufacturing) of apparel and home textiles made with certified organic fibre (such as organic cotton and organic wool), and includes both environmental and social criteria. Key provisions include a ban on the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), highly hazardous chemicals (such as azo dyes and formaldehyde), and child labour, while requiring strong social compliance management systems and strict waste water treatment practices. GOTS was developed by leading international standard setters - Organic Trade Association (U.S.), Japan Organic Cotton Association, International Association Natural Textile Industry (Germany), and Soil Association (UK) to define globally-recognised requirements that ensure the organic status of textiles, from field to finished product.
GOTS is a non-profit organisation which is self-financed. For more information please see www.global-standard.org and follow @globalorganictextilestandard on LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.
Global Organic Textile Standard
7765 certified facilities worldwide, an increase of 35%, with more than 3 million workers covered under GOTS in 2019.
GOTS specifically prohibits the use of any chemical input that releases carcinogenic arylamine compounds MAK III categories 1,2,3,4. This includes Aniline which is classified as MAK III Category 4 chemical.
However, Aniline serves as the basis of the synthetically produced dye indigo. In bound form, Aniline is not carcinogenic and consequently not harmful to consumers because it is firmly bound in the crystal lattice of the dye.
GOTS recognises that even when the material is produced to GOTS standards, there could be the possibility of unintended or unknown sources of contamination, which is why residue limits for certain chemicals have been specified for GOTS Goods. Given these circumstances, GOTS feels that their residual, unintended use limit of 100 mg/kg, with current understanding and knowledge, is adequate to ensure safety of consumers and in line with its larger philosophy of sustainability.
The complete GOTS Information on Aniline is available for download here