GOTS what is that?
If you are looking for new bed linen or bathroom textiles , you have seen "GOTS certified" everywhere on our site in the product descriptions. That green logo with a t-shirt. The label is used to indicate organic textiles, especially cotton. But what exactly does "GOTS certified" mean? Is it better than regular cotton, and if so, is it worth the investment?
What is GOTS ?
GOTS is the Global Organic Textile Standard - the world 's most important certification for textiles made with organic fibres. The organization not only guarantees that a product consists of organically grown or grown materials, but also certifies that each stage of textile processing meets social and environmental criteria. GOTS therefore certifies the entire chain. Because there are so many links, a chain certification is actually the only way to really be sure that it is organic.
Does GOTS really make a difference?
GOTS is considered the gold standard for organic materials and sustainable production. It provides consumers with reliable, easily recognizable textile information and gives brands and stores credibility through independent third-party certification.
The Global Organic T extile Standard is a non- profit organization. To ensure the consistency and relevance of the criteria, the organization has a Standards Committee, a Certifiers Council and regional representatives around the world.
How does a product become GOTS certified?
The first requirement is that the textile must contain a certain amount of organic fibres. To carry the standard GOTS label, a piece of clothing or bed linen must be made of at least 70% certified organic fibres. If a product is labeled organic, it must contain 95% or more organic fiber. All SUITE702 textiles are organic and therefore contain at least 95% organic fibres.
What are Organic Fibers?
Organic fibers are the raw plant materials that are spun into yarns or woven directly into fabrics. Fibers with a GOTS certificate meet the international standards for organic farming of the IFOAM, which means that they are grown without GMOs ( Genetically Modified Organisms ), weed killers or synthetic pesticides.
What is the IFOAM?
The IFOAM is the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements, an umbrella organization representing nearly 800 members in more than 100 countries, including GOTS.
What stages of the supply chain does GOTS assess ?
Not only is it confirmed that the cotton fibers are organically grown, but six critical stages of the supply chain are also carefully assessed before a product can carry the GOTS label. These include:
- First processing stages
- Weaving and knitting
- Wet processing (including painting)
Below is a brief explanation of each step:
1. Initial Processing Stages
A GOTS certification starts with the first processing of raw plant fibres. In cotton, the seeds are removed from the fibrous cotton bolls. (Cotton balls are the round balls that you find on plants; you can buy cotton balls at the drugstore).
Once the fibers are free of seeds, they are turned into yarns using an open-end spinning technique.
3. Weaving and knitting
The yarns are then processed into fabric using a weaving or knitting technique. GOTS allows both hand-woven and machine-woven textile production, but in the latter case all machine oils used must be free of heavy metals.
4. Wet processing
The next stage is the wet processing. This step may involve various treatments such as dyeing, bleaching, washing, printing, bonding.
Manufacturing is the last step in the production process of GOTS certified textiles. This step varies from product to product and can range from cutting, cutting and filling to stitching, labeling and packaging.
Retail, or trade, is the last phase of the chain that GOTS controls. It is precisely the fact that the entire chain is monitored that makes GOTS so valuable.
Organizations that buy and sell materials must not change the labeling or the product itself before making it available to retailers or consumers.
Shops and direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands that sell GOTS textiles are not required to obtain the certification themselves. However, many voluntarily apply for the certification to give their customers clear assurance about the quality and environmental friendliness of their products. SUITE702 BV naturally also has a GOTS certification. Our GOTS number is: CU 1010023. See also the GOTS website .
Is GOTS only for cotton?
The Global Organic T extile Standard has been developed for various natural fibers, including fibers from organically grown plants and organically raised animals. Although cotton is the most common organic textile, GOTS certified products can also be made from linen, silk, cashmere, wool, lamb reverse and down. For example, the washed linen of SUITE702, which consists of 55% linen and 45% cotton, is also fully GOTS certified.
What types of products are GOTS certified?
From certified organic clothing to bed linen and bedding, you can find all kinds of GOTS certified products in the market. In fact, far too little. The total supply of organic textiles is less than 5%. Of course it has to go up. As mentioned, all our bed and bath textiles are GOTS certified. Here's a brief overview:
- Percale cotton bedding set
- Percale cotton duvet cover
- Percale cotton fitted sheets
- Percale cotton pillowcases
- Satin cotton bedding set
- Satin cotton duvet cover
- Satin cotton pillowcases
- Washed linen bedding set
- Washed linen duvet cover
- Washed linen pillowcases
- Knitted plaid
- Knitted jar cover
Note: The eye pillows are made from the cutting remnants of the (certified) percale cotton fitted sheet. These are made in a sheltered workshop in Portugal by people with a distance to the labor market. This sheltered workshop is not GOTS certified, so we cannot offer it as such. But the cotton is of course just organic.
Is GOTS- certified organic bedding worth it?
Since GOTS certified organic products are made using very specific and ethical processes, the extra costs for organic bedding are due to more expensive and sustainable production methods. We think GOTS-certified organic bedding is more than worth the investment. Actually, as far as we are concerned, it goes without saying that we make products in this world that respect nature and fellow human beings.
Organic cotton is scarce and considerably more expensive. In addition to the fact that purchasing is more expensive, we, like all other links in the chain, need to have our administration in order. After all, the entire chain must be sustainable and socially responsible. Only then can you truly speak of a sustainable organic product. That is why we are also annoyed that too many brands are greenwashing. Brands often claim that they are sustainable, or with their own invented claims and logos such as “XXX says it's okay”. There is no monitoring at all by external parties. We also often see brands say that it is free of chemicals and therefore sustainable and responsible. But this only says something about the last link. The entire textile chain is extremely polluting (and highly debatable socially). Just checking whether chemicals have been left behind in the textile is not enough. All we have to do is raise the ambition. We are convinced that we do this with a GOTS certification. Next step is a B-Corp application. Together we make the difference.