Oekotex is your guarantee that the clothes your children are wearing, do not contain or give off harmful substances. It proves to you that you are able to dress your child with a good conscience.
To obtain the oekotex label, the product must comply with a number of requirements. The requirements are set up so that there must either be minimal amounts of each chemical released, or no trace of it at all. The oekotex foundation is continually adjusting their requirements so that they keep in line with the most up-to-date knowledge about harmful chemicals and textile production. All material used in production must comply with the Oekotex Standard 100. The requirements within this standard are not only related to textiles and yarns, but also include prints, motives and accessories. The requirements are rigid for textiles that are in direct skin contact and are most strict concerning goods for babies and for toddlers of up to 3 years old.
In the context of globalization and international competition, many companies source labor intensive goods from developing and newly industrialized countries. However, working conditions in these countries often do not comply with basic labor standards, such as those established by the International Labor Organization. To address this issue, many companies and associations have created individual codes of conduct and monitoring systems. The proliferation of individual codes, varying audit procedures and diverging approaches, has resulted in audit duplications within the same factory. This leads to unnecessary efforts, confusion about requirements, lack of transparency, lack of accountability, and higher costs for companies as well as their suppliers.
The Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI) works to tackle these challenges by offering a broad platform for cooperation.
BCMIS regulates the following:
• freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining are respected
• no discrimination is practiced
• child labor is prohibited
• legal minimum and/or industry standards wages are paid
• working hours are compliant with national laws and do not exceed 48 hours regular +12 hours overtime
• there is no forced labor and disciplinary measures
• the workplace is safe and healthy
• the environment is respected
• there is a policy for social accountability
• there is an anti-bribery and anti-corruption policy
Global Organic Textile Standards (GOTS): The comprehensive rules for ecological and socially responsible textile production.
The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) is the worldwide leading textile processing standard for organic fibers, including ecological and social criteria, backed up by independent certification of the entire textile supply chain.
The aim of the standard is to define worldwide recognized requirements that ensure organic status of textiles, from harvesting of the raw materials, through environmentally and socially responsible manufacturing up to labeling in order to provide a credible assurance to the end consumer. The standard covers the processing, manufacturing, packaging, labeling, trading and distribution of all textiles made from at least 70% certified organic natural fibers.
A textile product carrying the GOTS label grade ‘organic’ must contain a minimum of 95% certified organic fibers whereas a product with the label grade ‘made with organic’ must contain a minimum of 70% certified organic fibers.
At all stages through the processing organic fiber products must be separated from conventional fiber products and must to 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, any polyester must be post-consumer recycled from 2014 onwards)
All operators must have an environmental policy including target goals and procedures to minimize 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. From 1st January 2014 onwards any paper or cardboard used in packaging material, hang tags, swing tags etc. must be post-consumer 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 Labor Organization (ILO) must be met by all processors and manufacturers. They must have a social compliance management with defined elements in place to ensure that the social criteria can be met.
• Employment is freely chosen
• Freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining are respected
• Working conditions are safe and hygienic
• Child labor must not be used
• Living wages must be provided
• Working hours are not excessive
• No discrimination is practiced
• Regular employment is provided
• Harsh or inhumane treatment is prohibited