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What is OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON?

OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON is a globally standardized, independent testing and certification system for safer organic cotton. It certifies textile raw, intermediate and end products of all processing stages, as well as accessory materials, consisting of at least 70% organic cotton.

OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON Parameters

Testing and certification according to OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON requires:

  • Supply chain traceability to the field (cultivation)
  • Testing for genetically modified cotton (qualitative and quantitative) and numerous pesticides to detect mixing with conventional cotton
  • Testing for harmful substances:
    • Legally prohibited and regulated substances
    • Chemicals whose harmful effects are known but not legally regulated 
    • Substances for which a harmful effect is likely

How can ORGANIC COTTON support you?

OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON certification facilitates operational quality assurance and communication with stakeholders and consumers:

  • Detailed report and certificate as independent proof of safety from harmful substances and organic farming origins
  • Transaction certificates to maintain supply chain traceability
  • A B2B and B2C product label to communicate verified safety and organic materials
  • Cost savings through the OEKO-TEX® modular system - certificates for input materials are recognized at subsequent production stages, limiting the need for re-testing
  • Free listing of your certified products and company in the OEKO-TEX® Buying Guide

OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON Facts

  • OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON certificates are valid for 1 year
  • Annual renewal and testing is required. Renewal applications can be started up to 3 months before expiration
  • There are four product classes based on risk
  • For a finished product to be labeled, the final product and each of its components must be tested

ORGANIC COTTON Certificate Ownership & Use

A certification is only applicable to a product if each component - and the product itself - is certified.

Ownership:

  • Producers of raw cotton
  • Any manufacturer or reseller of organic cotton materials or finished goods - from any stage of processing - throughout the textile chain

Use:

As long as no changes have been made to the product covered under a supplier's certificate, a company may use their supplier's certificate/label.

Alternatively, many brands and retailers opt to re-certify the product(s) and maintain control with their own label number.

Pre-certification:

It is common that some or all of the inputs/ingredients of a product have been pre-certified by the supplier(s). Although this is NOT required, using pre-certified components helps to catch any issues at the source, where the chemical decisions are made in the supply chain.

With ORGANIC COTTON, traceability must be maintained through official transaction certificates.

Organic Cotton Criteria / Requirements

The certificate type depends on the percentage of organic cotton in your products
100% Organic

100% Organic

  • Pre-certifications:
    • OEKO-TEX® ​​​​​​ORGANIC COTTON
    • Transaction certificates
  • GMO tests - fibers:
    GMO < 10%
  • Pesticide tests:
    Negative
  • Issued certificate & label:
    OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON
70-99% Organic

Minimum 70% Organic

  • Pre-certifications:
    • OEKO-TEX® ​​​​​​ORGANIC COTTON
    • Transaction certificates
  • GMO tests - fibers:
    GMO < 10%
  • Pesticide tests:
    Negative
  • Issued certificate & label:
    OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON BLENDED
< 70% Organic

< 70% Organic

  • Pre-certifications:
    Organic origin
    (third-party or OEKO-TEX®)
  • GMO tests - fibers:
    GMO negative
  • Pesticide tests:
    Negative
  • Issued certificate & label:
    OEKO-TEX® STANDARD 100

OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON Certification Benefits:

  • Independent reassurance, verification and documentation of organic cotton claims
  • Tracking of material usage: from field to product
  • Uncommon for organic cotton certifications, OEKO-TEX® verifies each transaction certificate for better fraud control
  • Valuable contribution to environmentally friendly and socially responsible manufacturing of textiles
  • Easily identified label backed by the trusted OEKO-TEX® brand

ORGANIC COTTON Certification Process

  • Application
    Until April 1, 2023, please use our contact form to start the process. Your account manager will contact you to discuss.
  • Sample Material & Documents
    Provide required sample materials and documents.
  • Analytical Testing & Document Checking
    We test your samples in our labs and verify the documentation.
  • On-site Audit
    During an on-site audit of your operation, our OEKO-TEX® experts will confirm all certification details. The audit must take place before the certificate is issued - potentially, while the lab tests are carried out.
  • Certificate & Label Issued
    If your sample materials and documents meet the criteria, we issue a detailed report, OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON certificate and label.

OEKO-TEX® ORGANIC COTTON Certification

Downloads

Factsheets & Brochures

ORGANIC COTTON Factsheets, Brochures

OEKO-TEX®

Marketing

Technical Guides & Resources

Contact
Ben Mead
Managing Director
Hohenstein Americas