Few minor changes in new version 5.0 of Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) – starting March 2017

Few minor changes in new version 5.0 of Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) – starting March 2017

The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) is one of the best known global environmental standards that assures compliance with strict environmental standards in the whole supply chain for clothing and textiles. It also includes basic social standards. According to the GOTS, clothing or textiles can only be labelled “organic” if at least 95% organic fibers are used. However, the GOTS also allows the use of a lower percentage of organic fibers (at least 70%) with the label “made with x% organic material”. In 2015 almost 4.000 factories were certified according to the GOTS.

In March 2017, the GOTS was updated from version 4.0 to version 5.0 in a multi-stakeholder process. Most of the changes are minor changes that make the standard a little bit more clear and robust and which harmonize it with other standards like REACH or ZDHC. Below, we list a few more relevant changes:

  • Paragraphs 2.2.1 & 2.2.2 related to social standards were slightly clarified; Paragraph 3 on social standards has been reformulated very much; eventually, the term “living wages” was replaced with “fair renumeration”;
  • Paragraph 2.3.1 related to the use of Flame Retardants and Chlorophenols was clarified.
  • Paragraph 2.4.9.1 added new: Regenerated fibres like viscose or modal must be GMO free. The use of Viscose/ Modal is restricted to 10% again (25% for socks); Exceptions are the use of lyocell and recycled synthetic fibres which can be used to a maximum of 30%.
  • Changes in 2.4.12: In cases where pesticides/biocides are mandated for use due to national rules or law, they may be used in Storerooms / Transport but they must comply with the applicable international or national organic production standard. Wooden pallets used in storage and transport activities are exempt from this requirement.
  • In chapter 2.4.15 the test methods are updated and some limits harmonized with REACH;
  • Subsection 3.12 on “Ethical Business Behaviour” was added
  • In the manual, the list of allergenic disperse dyes was reviewed and modified, guidance to the ZDHC Wastewater Guidelines were added and various other changes were undertaken.

With these changes the GOTS remains one of the most trustworthy standards particularly for environmental issues. Factories that are certified according to the GOTS can update until 1. March 2018.

More information can be found here.