A number of different schemes are setting standards for sustainable cotton, each with their slightly different criteria. All of them are doing great work in helping keep customers informed about the quality of cotton. We have consolidated a list of the most prominent Cotton Certifications:
COTTON USA promotes U.S. cotton fibre and manufactured cotton products around the globe. Our reach extends to more than 50 countries through 20 offices around the world. Through COTTON USA programs, we touch lives every day by setting the global standard for purity, quality and responsibility. We promise consistently excellent quality to inspire your unique style of life.
Cotton is a natural and renewable fibre. It has been used to dress and protect humankind for at least 7,000 years and today, cotton is the fabric of a global industry. The finished fibre surrounds, comforts and nourishes us on a daily basis.
To ensure people can continue to reap cotton’s natural benefits today and in the future, the U.S. cotton industry is committed to responsibly producing cotton using the best and latest available science and technology, taking into account economics, environment and social responsibility.
Responsible agricultural production must balance a growing economy, protection for the environment and social responsibility:
- Environment: To minimize impact on soil, water, air and other resources, and reduce chemical and energy use
- Quality of life: To satisfy personal, family and community needs for health, safety, food and happiness
- Economics: To be profitable and to ensure jobs and income in a successful economy for the future
The most sustainable choice is the one where the net effects come closest to meeting these goals.
COTTON USA believes that responsibly grown cotton:
- Uses resources responsibly
- Optimizes efficiencies
- Minimizes water, energy, chemical use, waste and environmental impacts
- Provides safe and dignified working conditions
- Provides social and economic benefits to local communities
U.S. cotton producers are leading the way in responsible cotton production practices. For more information Please visit http://www.cottonusa.org .
The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) is recognised as the world's leading processing standard for textiles made from organic fibres. It defines high-level environmental criteria along the entire organic textiles supply chain and requires compliance with social criteria as well.
Only textile products that contain a minimum of 70% organic fibres can become GOTS certified. All chemical inputs such as dyestuffs and auxiliaries used must meet certain environmental and toxicological criteria. The choice of accessories is limited in accordance with ecological aspects as well. A functional waste water treatment plant is mandatory for any wet-processing unit involved and all processors must comply with social criteria. The key criteria of GOTS, its quality assurance system and the principles of the review and revision procedure are summarised in this section.
For more information please visit http://www.global-standard.org .
The STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® is a worldwide consistent, independent testing and certification system for raw, semi-finished, and finished textile products at all processing levels, as well as accessory materials used. Examples of articles that can be certified: raw and dyed/finished yarns, woven and knitted fabrics, accessories, such as buttons, zip fasteners, sewing threads or labels, ready-made articles of various types (garments of all types, domestic and household textiles, bed linen, terry products and much more).
Since its introduction in 1992, the central focus of the STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® has been the development of test criteria, limit values and test methods on a scientific basis. On the basis of its comprehensive and strict catalogue of measures, with several hundred regulated individual substances.
With its decades of experience, the OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 therefore contributes to high and effective product safety from a consumer’s point of view. Test criteria and limit values in many cases go far beyond applicable national and international standards. Extensive product checks and regular company audits also ensure that the industry has a globally sustainable awareness of the responsible use of chemicals. With this concept, the OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 has taken on a pioneering role for many years.
The precondition for the certification of products in accordance with OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 is that all parts of an article meet the required criteria - in addition to the outer fabric, for example, also the sewing threads, inserts, prints etc., as well as non-textile accessories, such as buttons, zip fasteners, rivets etc.
Additional preconditions are the existence and application of operational quality assurance measures, as well as the legally binding signing of undertakings and conformity declarations by the applicant.
For more information Please visit http://www.oeko-tex.com .
Founded in 1954, Supima® is the promotional organization of the American Pima cotton growers. The Board of Directors of this non-profit organization is composed of Pima growers from the states of Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas.
Supima’s primary objective is to promote the increased consumption of American Pima cotton around the world. Supima is a major sponsor of research programs to improve the quality of American Pima. Supima also works closely with cotton industry organizations and government agencies to ensure a fair and viable marketing environment for American Pima cotton growers.
Over 370-fine count textile mills, manufacturers and brands/retailers from around the world are licensed to use the Supima® brand; licenses are given only to select, high-quality textile mills, apparel and textile manufacturers, and brands/retailers whose products are made of American Pima cotton.
For more information please visit http://www.supima.com.
Cotton Incorporated, funded by U.S. growers of upland cotton and importers of cotton and cotton textile products, is the research and marketing company representing upland cotton. The Program is designed and operated to improve the demand for and profitability of cotton.
Each year, Cotton Incorporated sponsors more than 400 research projects with universities, USDA and private co-operators across the United States. The majority of these projects are aimed at improving production efficiency and profitability. Not only is Cotton Incorporated sponsoring projects, but there is also a significant amount of agricultural research sponsored by state universities and federal agencies. Cotton Incorporated’s Agriculture and Environmental Research Department has developed the Cotton Cultivated website to help users find cotton specific information as quickly and easily as possible.
For more information Please visit http://www.cottoninc.com.
Cotton LEADS™ is a program that is committed to responsible cotton production and is founded on core principles that are consistent with sustainability, the use of best practices and traceability in the supply chain. This joint program, initiated by Australia and the United States, offers manufacturers, brands and retailers a reliable cotton supply chain solution and confidence that their raw material is responsibly produced and identified. The Cotton LEADS™ program is driven by producers, scientists and professionals striving to make sure cotton is produced responsibly now and for years to come. Become a partner by specifying the Cotton LEADS™ program as one of your preferred cottons and signing the Commitment to Cotton.
For more information please visit http://www.cottonleads.org.
Thanks, as always, for reading.
The Cotton Team!
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