The Global Organic Textile Standard (commonly known as GOTS) is an international textile processing standard for organic fibres, which considers various ecological and social criteria to provide independent certification of the entire supply chain.
The aim of the standard is to define worldwide recognised requirements that ensure the organic status of textiles, from harvesting of the raw materials through environmentally and socially responsible production and manufacturing up to labelling to provide credible assurance to the end consumer.
Due to ever-growing global supply chains and manufacturing partners, GOTS certification allows textile manufacturers and processors to import or export their apparel with organic origin with a certification that is accepted internationally.
Manufacturing partners, suppliers and sub-contractors of Pirkani Apparel Ltd are licensed by GCL International Ltd to supply fully certified organic products in accordance with the Global Organic Textile Standard version 6.0, with the Scope Certificate Number GCL-3GO3216/GOTS-2021-1. The certification was issued after thorough inspection and assessment of the production facilities, including that of sub-contractors on the 14th day of March 2021 and valid until the 13th day of March 2023.
Where other manufacturing partners, suppliers or sub-contractors produce clothing for various Pirkani Collections, their certification details, license and certifying bodies are clearly mentioned.
All the certified products are sold ‘processed’, which includes printing, packaging or other chemical processing. All of the fabric labeled cotton used in Pirkani Collections is 100% Organic cotton, including the fabric trim (also called Rib). Full details of the GOTS standard version 6.0 may be found at the standard’s website. Some key considerations follow.
Environmental and Ecological Criteria for GOTS Certification
- All stages of apparel production and processing of organic fibre apparel must be separated from conventional inorganic fibre products and must be clearly identified.
- All chemical inputs (e.g. dyes, auxiliaries and process chemicals) must be evaluated and meeting basic requirements on toxicity and biodegradability/eliminability
- Prohibition of critical inputs such as toxic heavy metals, formaldehyde, aromatic solvents, functional nano particles, genetically modified organisms (GMO) and their enzymes.
- The use of synthetic sizing agents is restricted; knitting and weaving oils must not contain heavy metals
- Bleaches must be based on oxygen (no chlorine bleaching)
- Azo dyes that release carcinogenic amine compounds are prohibited
- Discharge printing methods using aromatic solvents and plastisol printing methods using phthalates and PVC are prohibited
- Restrictions for accessories (e.g. no PVC, nickel or chrome permitted)
- All operators must have an environmental policy including target goals and procedures to minimise waste and discharges
- Wet processing units must keep full records of the use of chemicals, energy, water consumption and wastewater treatment, including the disposal of sludge.
- The wastewater from all wet processing units must be treated in a functional wastewater treatment plant.
- Packaging material must not contain PVC. Paper or cardboard used in packaging material, hang tags, swing tags etc. must be recycled or certified according to FSC or PEFC.
Technical Quality and Human Toxicity Criteria
- Technical quality parameters must be met (s.a. rubbing, perspiration, light and washing fastness and shrinkage values)
- Raw materials, intermediates, final textile products as well as accessories must meet stringent limits regarding unwanted residues
Minimum Social Criteria
Minimum social criteria based on the key norms of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) must be met by all processors and manufacturers, including at farm level. They must have a social compliance management with defined elements in place to ensure that the social criteria can be met. For adequate implementation and assessment of the following social criteria topics the listed applicable key conventions of the International Labour Organization (ILO) have to be taken as the relevant basis for interpretation.
- Employment is freely chosen
- There is no forced or bonded labour
- Freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining are respected
- Working conditions are safe and hygienic
- Child labour must not be used
- Living wages
- Working hours are not excessive
- No discrimination is practised
- Regular employment is provided
- Harsh or inhumane treatment is prohibited
Quality Assurance System
A company participating in the GOTS certification scheme must work in compliance with all criteria of the standard, including its suppliers and sub-contractors. GOTS relies on a dual system to check compliance with the relevant criteria consisting of on-site auditing and residue testing.