The International Oeko-Tex Association, headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland will bring together its global management team in New York City at the end of October for its Annual Global General Managers Conference. The meeting is being held in the United States for the first time in recognition of Oeko-Tex’s rapidly expanding presence in this market.
The International Oeko-Tex Association is an organization made up of independent laboratories. Oeko-Tex provides textile testing and qualification under its Oeko-Tex Standard 100 Certification, a well known global eco-label that guarantees textile products are free from harmful levels of more than 100 restricted substances. The Oeko-Tex Standard 100 Certification is a voluntary testing and certification system for textile fibers, yarns, fabrics, and manufactured products of all kinds.
“We have worked with many U.S. brands, retailers, and associations who have been extremely receptive to Oeko-Tex,” says Manfred Wentz, U.S. Director for Oeko-Tex. “U.S. consumer demand for safe textiles is increasing rapidly and these forward-thinking companies are responding. The Oeko-Tex Standard 100 Certification is particularly relevant to U.S. companies because of its international scope that encompasses their global supply chains.”
Because of its objective perspective and global expertise, Oeko-Tex has been asked to advise multiple environmental task forces created by leading U.S. retailers and industry groups. Oeko-Tex recently collaborated with the American Apparel and Footwear Association to develop that group’s Restricted Substance List.
“Holding our annual conference in New York City recognizes the importance of the U.S. market to the global textile safety movement,” says Raimar Freitag, International General Secretary of the Oeko-Tex Association. “We began our work in the U.S. three years ago and are pleased that so many U.S. retailers and brands are now working with Oeko-Tex to ensure their textile products are safe for human use.” At the conference, Oeko-Tex general managers will verify policies and procedures, update the global restricted substances list, and identify best practices for worldwide implementation.
The Oeko-Tex general managers will also host a cocktail reception for U.S. companies and media at the Fashion Institute of Technology on Tuesday, October 30, at 5:30. Companies from around the world will display their Oeko-Tex certified merchandise in the product showcases at the event.
The International Oeko-Tex Association (Oeko-Tex.com), headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, was founded in 1992 by the Austrian Textile Research Institute and the German Hohenstein Research Institutes. Currently, its membership includes 17 independent textile research and testing institutes with offices in over 40 countries. To date, more than 60,000 certificates have been issued and 7,000 companies are working with Oeko-Tex to ensure that their products are tested for potentially harmful substances.