250 delegates attend 1st GOTS conference in Mumbai
The first International GOTS Conference held in Mumbai, India on May 22, 2015 was attended by more than 250 delegates from 12 countries.
These delegates included international and Indian brands, retailers, exporters, buying agents, dyes and chemical manufacturers, certification bodies, testing laboratories, academia, consultants, etc.
The theme of the conference which was ‘Strong Partnerships for Success’, initiated new partnerships and valuable discussions.
According to a GOTS press release, India is the country with the highest number of GOTS certified facilities worldwide, accounting for 1,300 of 3,600 GOTS facilities certified worldwide.
In the inaugural session, Herbert Ladwig, GOTS Managing director, expressed his happiness on the DGFT notification, explicitly excluding organic textiles from the new procedures for export of organic products.
Sharing his dream of a new concept of quality, he said, “If ecological civilization and thus sustainable production has to become main stream, a fundamental change of the concept of good product quality is necessary.”
“The perception of good quality must be transformed into a holistic one, where a product not produced in a sustainable way, is considered bad quality even if it is fashionable, fitting, and colourful,” he added.
The keynote address given by conference coordinator Sumit Gupta dwelt on the growth of GOTS in India and Bangladesh.
Speaking about the theme of the conference, he opined that sustainability is a complex concept and therefore the whole supply chain has to work in a strong partnership to achieve this goal.
According to Gupta, trust and long term commitment is required from both buyers and suppliers and concluded his address by saying that ‘only together we are strong’.
The first session on ‘Storytelling: Brands and Retailers Business Case for Sustainability through GOTS’ discussed the business case for sustainability’ and linked sustainability based textile standards to competitive strategies.
The second session titled ‘Going for GOTS’ explained the procedure of acquiring the GOTS certificate and the third panel discussion was on ‘Sustainability Standards: National or International? -The Role of International Voluntary Sustainability Standards in Relation to National Statutory Compulsory Sustainability Standards’.
The last and fourth session was a Panel Discussion on ‘Supply Chain: Challenges and Opportunities with GOTS’.
“The event got fabulous feedback from the attendees for quality of sessions, networking opportunities and eminence of delegates,” GOTS added in the press release.
GOTS is the stringent voluntary global standard for the entire post-harvest processing of apparel and home textiles made with organic fibre and includes both environmental and social criteria.
Key provisions include a ban on the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), highly hazardous chemicals and child labour, while requiring strong social compliance management systems. (AR)
Fibre2fashion News Desk - India