40 and specifications, Eco standards

R. Sukanya Devi

epgp books




  1. Introduction

Industrialization is necessary for a rapid growth , but not at the cost of the environment. In order to have a sustainable growth, Eco standards are framed by the Government of India which ensures that the environment is least affected. In this session the eco standards and specifications will be discussed in detail

  1. Need for eco standards

The textile and garment industry is judged as a sensitive and important part of all ecological and environmental movements. For the last few decades awareness on sustainable development and green textiles has taken place and development is planned to reverse the natural resource destruction and conserve a healthy environment.

  1. Eco standards

Eco-standards are norms that are formulated to address towards solving or dealing with environmental problems (economic and social aspects incorporated as well) The norms are developed on analyzing the product’s entire life cycle (cradle to grave approach) ie., from extraction of raw material to disposal after use

  1. Eco Labels
  • Eco labelling is a voluntary scheme, which can be chosen to label the product by the producers, importers and retailers.
  • Eco labels are an official symbol that shows that a product has been designed to do less harm to the environment than similar products.
  • Eco label should enumerate and explain the criteria guaranteeing environmentally – sound production
  • Take into account the complete life cycle
  • To be controlled by independent organization
  • It can be used as a marketing tool which guarantees product quality
  • Customers can identify the environmentally safe products by verifying eco labels
  • It enables to earn premium on products


Different Eco – labels


Eco-labels may be used on a mandatory and voluntary basis. Mandatory labelling is issued by third party and voluntary basis will be either by self or by third party. Third part may be either by Government bodies or by private bodies. Some of the eco labels are listed below :

Eco standards applicable for textile processes

  • Cultivation of cotton
  • Spinning of yarn
  • Fabric formation
  • Dyeing, finishing of fabric
  • Manufacture of garments
  • Packaging of product
  • Usage of clothing and its care
  • Recycling and disposal of waste textiles.

4.1 Cultivation of cotton


Better Cotton Initiative is a non-profitable initiative that exists to make the production of cotton better for the people, environment and for the development of the textile sector.

The cotton growing areas in the world like Australia, India, Pakistan, Israel, USA, Brazil, Cotton grown in Africa etc are identified as Better Cotton growing area. This initiative emphasize on the minimal impact of cotton protection practices, promote water stewardship, care for soil, enhance biodiversity, preserve fibre quality, decent work and operate on an effective management system.


GOTS certification


The aim of the standard is to define world-wide recognized requirements that ensure organic status of textiles, from harvesting of the raw materials, through environmentally and socially responsible manufacturing up to labelling in order to provide a credible assurance to the end consumer.


Textile processors and manufacturers are enabled to export their organic fabrics and garments with one certification accepted in all major markets.



4.2 Fabric formation

GoodWeave is working to end child labor in the carpet industry and to offer educational opportunities to children in South Asia. Through its monitoring and inspections program, GoodWeave is helping to combat the problem of exploitative child labor and to transform the handmade rug industry by certifying child-labor-free rugs and providing education and opportunities to rescue at-risk children. The GoodWeave label is the best assurance that no child labor was used in the making of your rug.


4.3 Dyeing, finishing of fabric


Oeko-Tex Standard 100plus is a product label providing textile and clothing manufacturers with the opportunity to highlight the human-ecological optimisation of their products as well as their efforts in production ecology to consumers. Companies can receive this award if their manufactured products have been successfully certified according to Oeko-Tex Standard 100 and they are also able to provide evidence that the entire production chain – in other words, all production sites involved in manufacturing a product – seamlessly comply with the requirements of the Oeko-Tex Standard 1000. Additionally, certain social standards as required by Oeko-Tex Standard 1000 must be met.


Criteria for eco-label based on life



Norms of eco friendly textiles

  • Seven classes of dyes and chemicals in textile production and processing are to be considered
  • Formaldehyde
  • Toxic pesticides
  • Penta chloro phenol
  • Heavy metal traces
  • Azo dyes which release carcinogenic amines
  • Chlorine bleaching

Standards and specifications – Formal dehyde

Eco Auditing


Eco-auditing is an assessment which is a

  • Systematic, Documented, periodic and objective review of the facility, operation, practices and products
  • It ensures that the product meets environmental requirement
  • The industry is assessed for conformance of norms or criteria in procurement , manufacturing and processing of the textile products to meet the eco standards
  • Reveals eco status of the unit

Criteria for Eco-auditing


There are three key areas of a textile products that are assessed as criteria for eco-auditing

  • Environmental requirements concerning the fibre types used.
  • Environmental requirements concerning the processes and chemicals used in the production of textiles.
  • Requirements concerning the usability of the final textile products.

Devi Keywords to meet eco-criteria:

  • Due to the various keywords to meet eco-criteria, the following possibilities may arises.
  • To analyse eco-pressures on the industry hence impact possibilities to soil, air and water.
  • Environmental auditing of all inputs, including raw materials used chemicals and dyes.
  • An action plan should be developed to interpret the results of chemical audit.
  • Substitution of chemical and dyes.
  • Laboratory bench testing.
  • Pilot test testing.
  • Production scale testing.
  • Process optimisation.
  • Development of a quality assurance system and qualityassurance manual.

Classification of eco-auditing

  • Product audit
  • Production audit Product Audit
  • Assessment of conformance of the textile goods to the eco-parameters
  • Use of the textile goods
  • Pollution caused
  • Disposal and recyclability
  • Raw materials, dyestuff and auxiliaries
  • Energy
  • Water
  • Working conditions
  • Continuous chain of information from company through questionnaires
  • Weak point analysis of products and processes
  • Eco-parameters are confirmed, ecolabels will be issued. Precautions to meet Eco-standards
  • Procure dyestuff and auxiliaries from reputed manufacturers
  • Obtain Safety Data sheets from the manufacturer
  • No loose packages
  • Check for red / negative/ banned list of chemicals
  • Use latest shade cards
  • Go for eco-auditing
  • It is the responsibility of the producer, retailer and consumer to manufacture and use green textiles to make a sustainable development of the textile industry
  • Dyes and chemical manufacturers and the textile processing industry to come together and arrive at a meaningful solution to tackle the problem
you can view video on and specifications, Eco standards


  1. Lopmundra Nayak, and P S Nayak: A Part of Ensuring Eco-Standard, Clothesline, July 2004.
  2. http://www.ecolabelindex.com/ecolabels/?st=category,textiles
  3. Dr R B Chavan: Eco-friendly Specially Chemicals in Garment Finishing.
  4. https://www.textilestandards.com/
  5. Gam, J., Cao, Farr and Kang. (2010). Quest for the eco-apparel market: a study of mothers’ willingness to purchase organic cotton clothing for their children. International Journal of Consumer Studies. 1-9.
  6. Moore, S. and Wentz, M. (2009), editors, “Eco-labeling for textiles and apparel”. In Sustainable Textiles Life cycle and environmental impact, Ch.10, Cambridge Woodhead Publishing In Textiles,