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Testing/​Standards

Solid progress for GOTS in 2023

ESA satellite data trialled to detect and classify cotton fields across India.

13th May 2024

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Germany

Clothing/​Footwear, Sustainable

Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) reports that 14,676 facilities in 89 countries were certified by its 25 registered bodies in 2023 – 8% up on 2022 – and during the year, it teamed up with the European Space Agency (ESA) and software company Marple on a project that aims to develop the remote satellite monitoring of organic cotton cultivation systems.

GOTS Version 7.0

Facilities that become GOTS-certified will now operate under the new GOTS Version 7.0, released in March 2023, with a one-year transition period. GOTS Version 7.0 and its accompanying implementation manual provide a comprehensive solution for companies who want to produce organic textiles and be supported to ensure compliance with environmental and human rights due diligence along the entire value chain, from field to finished product.

“GOTS was always instrumental for pioneers in the textile industry to voluntarily demonstrate their commitment to sustainable value chains, as a risk management tool and for operational efficiency,” said Claudia Kersten, managing director of GOTS overseeing body, Global Standard. “With the new and upcoming supply chain regulations, GOTS has acquired the additional role of helping companies show compliance with laws.”

GOTS Version 7.0 has introduced a six-step due diligence process and handbook that equips certified operations to proactively identify, assess and mitigate adverse impacts throughout their value chains.

Satellite

The project with ESA is training artificial intelligence (AI) to use the space agency’s satellite data to detect cotton fields across India and automatically classify them according to their cultivation standard.

By integrating standardised yield metrics, this will enable GOTS to generate realistic estimates of organic cotton yields in specific areas. In addition, the project is expected to empower the organisation to recognise cotton fields that have not yet obtained organic certification but possess the potential for transition. The first results of the project will be announced in June.

Also during 2023, the Farm-Gin Registry was introduced for the 2022-2023 harvest season in  India – the globe’s largest producer of organic cotton – to act as a link between farm and gin and strengthen integrity by collecting organic raw seed cotton data by producing farm or farm group.

www.global-standard.org

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