For another consecutive year, the international OEKO-TEX® Association reported positive results, despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. The association issued more than 31,000 certificates and labels in the past financial year, an increase of 31% compared to 2019/2020. Once again, MADE IN GREEN by OEKO-TEX® grew the most, doubling the number of labels. OEKO-TEX® also moved forward with its new Water and Carbon Footprint Tool.
For nearly three decades, OEKO-TEX® has stood for transparency along the textile and leather production chains, consumer protection and the guarantee of greater safety and confidence for all those involved. “Our mission remains unchanged” says OEKO-TEX® Secretary General Georg Dieners. “The annual report reflects the growing importance of this topic across the industry.” Over 21,000 manufacturers, brands and retailers formally work with OEKO-TEX® in more than 100 countries. The number of labels and certificates issued rose from 24,205 to 31,696 between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.
Support through the crisis
During year two of the COVID-19 pandemic, OEKO-TEX® has made every effort to continue with certification and avoid supply chain interruptions. The association supported the industry and global fight against COVID-19 with waivers of over 370 STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® certification fees on mouth and nose masks. Due to travel restrictions, the organization implemented guidelines for virtual audits to ensure a smooth and consistent certification process. In addition, over 620,000 workers benefit from employment in safe and socially responsible working conditions with environmentally friendly processes verified by STeP by OEKO-TEX® certification.
Implementation Carbon and Water Footprint Tool
OEKO-TEX® continues to support the industry with knowledge and sustainable solutions. Together with sustainability consulting group Quantis, the Association has developed the OEKO-TEX® Carbon & Water Footprint Tool to help the fashion industry reduce its CO2 emissions and water consumption. In 2021 the methodology was successfully certified by a neutral third party and implemented. The tool will be integrated into the STeP by OEKO-TEX® certification in 2022.
High quality assurance
The trust that the market bestows upon a certificate is of prime importance. In this respect, OEKO-TEX® continually takes action to implement a variety of quality assurance measures and incorporating external views. Round Robin Tests are an important part of our strategy to ensure the high quality of our measuring procedures and laboratories. Identical samples are tested with identical test methods at each institute to provide an interlaboratory comparison.
In terms of trademark protection OEKO-TEX® has worked, since beginning of 2021, with the brand protection software SENTRYC to act against trademark infringement. So far, over 2,600 misuse cases have been detected and resolved. In addition to engaging with external multi-stakeholder initiatives, the first OEKO-TEX® International Advisory Board (IAB) took place in April 2021. The core function of the IAB is to provide advice on the further development of standards based on the OEKO-TEX® Working Group proposals.
Annual Report 2020/2021 as pdf