The amount of cotton and cotton products on the world market that is claimed to be “organic” far outweighs the amount of cotton that is actually certified to be organic.
It has become fashionable to say that something has been made from organic cotton – fashionable and easy as there is no authority to enforce those claims.
Blessed Earth as a manufacturer and retailer is routinely inspected by the Bio-Dynamic Research Institute of Australia.
Similarly our manufacturers in India and Turkey are certified by Global Organic Textiles Standard, commonly referred to as GOTS. All of our cotton bedding, clothing and textile homewares products carry either the GOTS label. We only carry certified organic cotton. Unless it is certified, we are not interested.
The testing for certification is quite rigorous. Every step of the way, from seeds that are not genetically modified, to ginning (cleaning), to knitting or weaving, to dyeing and to the stitching of the end product, inspections are rigorously carried out to ensure that specified guidelines are being observed.
Any system is capable of being rorted so we regularly visit our overseas suppliers to see for ourselves that everything is in order. It takes a special consciousness to dedicate oneself to organic growing and production. We look for that in the people we deal with and they become our trading partners; heart-felt allies in offering top quality, chemical free products.
People often ask us if our imported goods are fumigated. We obtain a certificate that they will not be fumigated and even if they were inadvertently sprayed for any reason, we ensure they are hermetically sealed so there can be no possibility of contamination.
Please be discerning when you see “organic cotton”, or even “certified organic cotton”. Ask for proof. If you’re in a shop don’t expect the staff to know. Ask the owners of the business for proof, a GOTS certificate. Be aware that OKEO certification has nothing to do with the integral purity of what you are buying; it relates to manufacturing practices.
On most products bearing the GOTS claim, we will provide the certification certificate. Sometimes, for reasons of confidentiality, we withhold them. If we have not provided those details and it is important to you, please let us know. You will need to provide your name, address and phone number if we are to respond.
We at Blessed Earth would love to see Australia as a discernment centre for organics. That starts with you, the consumer, asking questions and not being misled by unethical marketing practices.