With contact offices in more than 60 countries, based in Zurich, OEKO-TEX® today offers transparency and orientation along the textile production chain. For retailers and consumers. We spoke to OEKO-TEX® General Secretary Georg Dieners.
Georg Dieners, General Secretary of OEKO-TEX ® on the importance of textile certification
OEKO-TEX® is the world’s leading and most experienced provider of independently created textile certifications
GREENSTYLE: Mr. Dieners, it is difficult for consumers to check whether textiles have really been produced sustainably and fairly. Different textile seals buzz around, what should you stick to?
Georg Dieners: Sustainability and a more conscious lifestyle are the trend. The fashion industry is also becoming increasingly active here. Next Environmentally friendly aspects are increasingly being looked at at work processes and the social conditions are expected to be correct. These include, for example, fair wages, regular working hours and adequate occupational safety. With our Made in Green by OEKO-TEX® we take up precisely these aspects of labels and make them verifiable and documentable for retailers from the textile industry. With the individual Product ID or the QR code on each product is transparently and transparently disclosed to the consumer where and how the finished textile piece was manufactured.
In addition to environmentally friendly aspects, work processes are increasingly being looked at and the social conditions are expected to be correct.
GREENSTYLE: OEKO-TEX® offers various standards, which will be regularly improved. Why is what OEKO-TEX® does so important?
Georg Dieners: The STANDARD100 by OEKO-TEX® label is one of the world’s best-known labels and stands for textiles that have been tested for harmful substances. If textiles have been awarded this label, consumers can rest assured that all components of this product, including yarn, buttons and other accessories, have been checked for harmful substances and that the article is free of harmful ingredients. We also identify and eliminate potential risks in the existing supply chain, monitor production and also take care of quality assurance through regular random checks. It is not easy for manufacturers and customers to keep an overview of the current legal situation regarding harmful ingredients, which is why we work here with long-term partners, experts and institutes worldwide who make and define everything for us.
Our label guarantees that all components of this product have been tested for harmful substances and that the article is free of harmful ingredients.
We have arrived at a time when buyers are gradually realizing that they have to make their purchase decisions differently in order to avoid serious consequences for our planet. OEKO-TEX® has conveyed this idea from the beginning, is considered trustworthy and is a pioneer for many.
GREENSTYLE: Where is the journey going to? More seals? More clarity?
Georg Dieners: It is important that dealers, raw material and chemical suppliers, textile manufacturers and also retailers know what is in the textiles, how they were processed and where they come from. A transparent supply chain that can be traced and provides guidance. Awareness must be developed to work sustainably and ecologically responsible and transparently. And that also provides orientation for consumers.
Interview: Susanne Barta