Frequently Asked Questions
OneCert offers both GOTS and OCS for organic textile certification. What is the difference?
The biggest difference is that the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certification covers fiber and processing claims. This means that the fiber content is tracked, and that processing and chemical inputs are limited. In addition, GOTS includes criteria related to social and environmental responsibility. GOTS products must be at least 70% organic fiber; the remainder can be comprised of allowed fibers as listed in the standards.
By contrast, the Organic Content Standards (OCS) is simply a content claim standard. This means that the organic fiber percentage in a product is tracked and documented throughout the supply chain. OCS does not cover processing, so although the organic content is tracked, there are no requirements or limitations on the types of processing that can be done. Further, OCS allows for more blending options. A product must be at least 5% organic fiber to be certified and labelled to the OCS.
Both GOTS and OCS certification include recognizable logos and allow for on- or off-product labelling. However, only GOTS certification has been recognized by the USDA as acceptable verification for labelling products as “organic.”
What is the timeline for becoming certified?
In the US, it typically takes about 12 weeks from application to certification. However, the actual time per certification can be either much longer, or much shorter. Often this depends upon the completeness of the initial application you submit and how quickly we can get an inspector to your area.
How much does organic textile certification cost?
If you are in the United States, please request a certification packet and look at our Fee Schedule. Fees are determined by your annual organic sales. Currently, OneCert’s textile certification fees start at $1600 USD. To obtain a copy of our Fee Schedule, download a certification packet from our website.
For international clients, please complete the “GOTS Quote Asia” form to obtain a quote.
What is involved in the process? What is the first step?
The first step is to go to our website and request a certification packet. Complete the organic system plan (OSP), and submit your application and fee to OneCert.
Then as you implement your OSP, OneCert will review it for completeness and compliance. After this, we will send an inspector to your operation to evaluate the execution of your OSP. Finally, OneCert will review the inspector’s report for compliance to the standards and make a decision regarding your operation’s organic certification.
My certified supplier provided me with a “scope certificate.” What does that mean?
Companies that have demonstrated the ability to comply with the relevant (GOTS/OCS) criteria to an Approved Certifier receive a scope certificate. This certificate lists the products which can be offered certified and labelled to the standard. Before ordering certified product from a supplier, you should make sure that their certificate is still valid, and that the product you are ordering is listed on the certificate.
My certified supplier provided me with a “Transaction certificate.” What is this?
To assure that a specific shipment of products received is (GOTS/OCS) certified, a buyer can ask their certified supplier to provide a Transaction Certificate (TC). This document is issued by the certifier of the supplier and lists the concrete products and shipment details including the buyer’s name and address and declares the certification status of the shipped goods.
Is my operation required to be GOTS/OCS certified?
For both GOTS and OCS, certification of the supply chain must start with the first post-harvest processing stage. For organic cotton, this is ginning, and for wool, it is scouring. The entire supply chain must then be certified to the applicable standard through the final business to business transaction. Retailers selling directly to the end consumer are exempt.
If GOTS/OCS certification starts post-harvest, what are the requirements for the raw fiber?
Raw natural fibers, such as cotton, wool, and flax certified to the National Organic Program (NOP) crop and livestock production standards may be used as raw materials for GOTS/OCS products. In fact, for textile products to be sold as “organic” in the United States, all fibers used must have been produced and certified under the NOP regulations.
For product sold in other countries, certification to any standard approved in the IFOAM Family of standards is accepted. (Most commonly: EC Regulation 834/2007, USDA’s NOP, APEDA’s NPOP.)
The raw organic cotton used in my product was certified to the NOP. Can I use the USDA Organic seal?
No. The USDA regulates the term “organic” as it applies to agricultural products through the National Organic Program (NOP) Regulation. Therefore, you cannot use the USDA seal unless your textile product is produced in full compliance with the NOP regulations.