GOTS vs. OEKO-TEX
When buying fabric by the meter today, you often find labels such as OEKO-TEX and GOTS, but what do they mean and what is really the best alternative?
GOTS (The Global Organic Textile Standard) is the world's leading textile processing standard for organic fibres.
The certification covers the entire textile supply chain – from fiber cultivation to finished fabric, and covers both environmental protection and ethical guidelines in accordance with, among other, the UN's criteria for human rights.
Textiles marked with GOTS organic must contain a minimum of 95% organic fibres.
In contrast to GOTS, the most common OEKO-TEX certification, Standard 100, has no connection to organic fibres.
Textiles marked with OEKO-TEX Standard 100 are certified "harmless to human health". The textiles have undergone testing to ensure that they do not contain harmful substances. The standard is divided into four groups with different amounts of permitted harmful substances depending on the area of use, where the strictest standard applies to baby clothes.
The OEKO-TEX standard has no requirements regarding fiber content.
What exactly is the advantage of organic fabrics?
Organic fabrics are made from fiber from plants grown according to standards for organic farming, or made from wool from animals in organic animal husbandry. Organic farming and animal husbandry do not use artificial fertilizers and pesticides, it is not legal to use toxic chemicals and genetically modified seeds - by removing these you preserve the health of the soil, nature, people and animals.
In addition to saving nature from toxins, far less water and energy is also used in the cultivation of, for example, cotton in organic farming compared to conventional cotton, as much as 71% less water and 62% less energy (this calculation depends on which part of the world the cotton is grown in and how much rainfall it receives).
The people who work with organic farming have much safer and healthier working conditions. They are not exposed to chemicals in their work and do not risk the various diseases that often occur among farmers who work with conventional cultivation of, for example, cotton. Around 200 000 people die each year from pesticide poisoning worldwide, and more are hospitalized. Chronic exposure to pesticides has been linked to cancer, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, hormone disruption, developmental disorders and sterility (Source: Environmental Justice Foundation). The chemicals not only affect the farmers who work directly with them, but also the people who live in the surrounding areas – the chemicals end up in rivers that are used for drinking and bathing water for the local population.
By choosing organic fabrics, we contribute to:
Preserving the environment
A healthier animal and insect life
Better health for farmers