Did you know the textile industry is the second most-polluting in the world? According to facts and figures from the United Nations, the emissions and the amount of waste water that result from this sector has increased to unsustainable numbers. Some of these alarming figures are that this industry is responsible for 8% of greenhouse gas emissions, that fashion uses 93,000 million cubic metres of water each year, or that 85% of textile products end up in landfills, instead of being recycled.
For this reason, and many others, many businesses connected to textiles, Ecolife among them, have decided to focus their production processes on a future that is more respectful towards the environment. We believe it is paramount to use the resources available in a sustainable manner, organising the textile industry so that it becomes a circular system that benefits the planet as well as the economy. And, of course, one which maintains the quality of our recycled yarns so they are used to create long-lasting products. Keep reading to learn more about our sustainability certifications!
Textile certifications: What are they and what are they for?
Nowadays, it is common for businesses that are committed to the environment to look for ways to certify that the raw materials they use originate from sustainable sources, and that the resources are obtained using the best practices. Within the fashion and textile industries, this takes the form of several tags and certificates that ensure the product is sustainable throughout the supply chain, and among others, at Ecolife we have the following:
GRS, or Global Recycling Standard
The Global Recycling Standard, or GRS for short, issues third-party certifications of recycled content in textile products if they meet certain requirements:
- Products must be recycled.
- There must be an upstanding chain of custody.
- Best social and environmental practices.
- Chemical restrictions during production processes must be upheld.
This certification means that GRS undertakes audits regarding the above regularly, ensuring the requirements are met while saving time and money for their clients.
Oeko-Tex® Standard 100
While the previous certificate focusses on the origin and supply chain of the raw materials, and on each stage of the production process, the Oeko-Tex® Standard 100 certification hinges on a meticulous study to check that every textile is free of harmful substances. This label offers the buyer assurance that each material has been studied at a lab and put through extensive testing to guarantee that the materials are harmless to human health. Moreover, the criteria catalogue curated by Oeko-Tex® is updated regularly, adding new potentially harmful substances as they are discovered.
Better Cotton Initiative, or BCI
This certification is somewhat different, since it aims to improve the quality of life and provide training for cotton farmers, in order to transform textile production from the ground up. BCI is a non-profit organisation that works across 25 countries, training the agriculture sector and ensuring that cotton is farmed using sustainable practices. Retailers who are members of the Better Cotton Initiative pay a fee for each metric tonne of cotton, money that is invested in continued development and support for farmers.
Sustainability standards not exclusive to the textile industry
As well as the certificates we described above, which are mainly focussed on the production and distribution of companies within the textile and fashion industries, we have obtained other standards, not specific to textiles, that help us on our path towards a circular economy: CO2 Neutral and OCS 100 – Organic Content Standard. The former acknowledges the steps each organisation takes to reduce their environmental impact, while the latter, which can be applied to any non-food product, verifies it contains the right percentage of a given organic material.
At Ecolife by Belda Lloréns we are committed to the environment; we want to get closer to a sustainable circular economy with each step of our production processes, reducing our impact and ensuring the future of the planet. If you would like to receive more information, or you would be interested in working with us, don’t hesitate to contact us!