One of the main missions of OEKO-TEX® is to create trust within the textile and leather industry. As this confidence is based on a constant high quality, every year, OEKO-TEX® updates the applicable test criteria, limit values and guidelines for its certifications, which will enter into force in the first quarter of 2023.
New integration: OEKO-TEX® STeP goes BHive®
Cooperation and exchange with experts from the textile and leather industry are of great importance to the OEKO-TEX® Association. An important partnership was created with sustainability accelerator GoBlu International Ltd.
The BHive® app, developed by GoBlu, enables manufacturers to collect information on all chemical products used on site, via smartphone, and determine which products meet the sustainability requirements of different brands and retailers. All information is automatically recorded in a chemical inventory so that brands can directly access transparent and precise data.
Starting April 2023, OEKO-TEX® STeP customers can utilize this comprehensive chemical database to reduce labor, time and costs. The intelligent system also aligns compliance with recognized industry standards such as the STeP and ZDHC MRSLs.
OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON: new organic cotton textiles certification
In April 2023, the new OEKO-TEX® certification: ORGANIC COTTON will be launched, which will focus on the reliable labeling of organic cotton textiles.
In addition to the qualitative DNA analysis of the sample material (i.e., Does a product contain genetically modified cotton, yes or no?), a second step involves quantification – determining the proportion of genetically modified cotton in a cotton product. The aim is not only to check production, but to make the raw materials traceable through the supply chain.
According to Georg Dieners: “What’s new is that we will start checking for genetically modified cotton at the beginning of the supply chain – at the ginning stage when the cotton fibres are separated from the seed. Then we can follow the flow of goods through all stages.”
OEKO-TEX ECO PASSPORT: Self-assessment and adaptation to ZDHC update will be mandatory in the future
While the on site visit will remain voluntary until further notice, the self-assessment will become mandatory for all customers’ production sites from April 2023. All certifications issued after April 1, 2023, must be accompanied by a valid self-assessment.
For existing customers, there is a possible transition period. OEKO-TEX® has issued a general ban on the use of perfluorinated and polyfluorinated alkyl substances (PFAS/PFC) in textiles, leather and footwear for the STANDARD 100, LEATHER STANDARD and ECO PASSPORT certifications. This is in coordination with the ZDHC Manufacturing Restricted Substances List (ZDHC MRSL) version 3.0 and its new Conformance Guidance 2.0. ECO PASSPORT will comply with these requirements in February 2023 to ensure a smooth transition for all customers.
Updates to STANDARD 100, LEATHER STANDARD and ECO PASSPORT limit value catalogues
In general, having strict requirements for certain substances reduces exposure to the environment, workers and consumers.
> Additional pesticides have been added to STANDARD 100, LEATHER STANDARD and ECO PASSPORT certifications, such as chlorothalonil in Annex 4 and 6, which were previously under observation.
> Three substances have been reclassified as Substances of Very High Concern (SVHC) that may have serious effects on human health and the environment.
In 2023, OEKO-TEX® will continue to monitor various substances based on the latest scientific findings and conformity with relevant specifications.
AITEX is the only Spanish center approved to issue leader OEKO-TEX® certifications in the world: Standard 100, Made in Green, Leather Standard, STeP y ECO PASSPORT. Contact AITEX for more information.