Globally, the number of facilities certified by the GOTS rose 14.6% to 5,760 in 2018 and Bangladesh continued its second position here. Bangladesh has the second most GOTS-certified factories worldwide with 689 facilities, just behind India with 1973 factories.
In the country, the number of globally recognized textile factories, which use organic raw materials, rose 29% last year, with the growth rate being highest globally.
Rahul Bhajekar, GOTS Managing Director shared this information at a seminar organized by Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) on 8th September 2019. The day-long international seminar with the theme of ‘Connecting for Success’, was organized at the International Convention City Bashundhra (ICCB) in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The seminar addressed the pressing issues relevant to the organic textile industry.
The seminar was designed in 4 sessions including slide show presentation, question-answer and with a panel discussion. The 1st session conducted on ‘Sustainable Retail: Stories from Fashion Industry’. Claudia Kersten, GOTS Managing Director, Germany, was present as the moderator of this session.
This session brought forward the recent trends, priorities and experience of conscious buyers. The session also included perspective from international brands and retailers, sourcing from Bangladesh.
Bruno Van Sieleghem, Stanley and Stella S.A., Belgium and Jan Moritz, Julius Hüpeden GmbH, Germany were present as the speaker.
Bangladesh has the second most GOTS-certified factories worldwide with 689 facilities.
The 2nd session held on ‘Technical Criteria and Implementation’ where Rahul Bhajekar, GOTS Managing Director delivered a presentation on this session. The session was conducted on the requirements for the standard have consistently been evolving to keep pace with technical research and market requirements.
The session was about the latest criteria of technical standard of GOTS. It further presented the experiences from implementation partners for technical aspects of the standard.
Rahul Bhajekar, speaks on GMO testing protocol, ISO IWA 32 – Technical Details and Impacts and he also showed Central Database System – Enhanced Traceability in GOTS supply chain.
‘GOTS Criteria – Fiber Composition & Technical Requirements’ was another topic of this session conducted by Sumit Gupta, Deputy Director Standards Development & Quality Assurance,
The final discussion in this session was ‘Introduction to GOTS Monitor (water/energy) Tool’ by Prachi Gupta, Prachi Gupta, Expert Quality Assurance & Impact, GOTS.
In an answer to a question Rahul Bhajekar said, “GOTS never specify or promote any laboratory for GMO testing but they should follow GOTS standard.”
“GOTS has clear audit requirement so for any inspection how much time will be needed or how many people should have to engage for audit purpose that will depend on inspector’s demand,” he said while replying to a question.
Implementation of GOTS tools sometimes expensive and connected to huge investment, in reply to this question Sumit Gupta said, “GOTS has own standard and communication tools and I believe, following the GOTS routine will be helpful to reduce cost.”
The 3rd session was on topic ‘Connecting on the Job: Workers and Management’. With a panel discussion, moderated by Herbert Ladwig, Policy and Legal Advisor, GOTS, Germany, this session tried to explore the working conditions at the garments (and other) factories in Bangladesh for a meaningful connection and strong ties between workers and factory owners for mutual growth.
This session also an effort to connect important stakeholders in the field of social compliance because the social debate is vast, and the session primarily covered collective bargaining and complaint procedures.
Armanul Azim, Tosrifa Industries Limited, Bangladesh; Dr. Uttam Kumar Das, Advocate, Supreme Court of Bangladesh and Abdul Mottaleb, CERES Bangladesh were present as the panelists in this session.
The 4th and final session was on ‘Connecting Supply Chain Partners: Efficient Partnerships for Successes’. This session focused to connect the key supply chain partners and discussed their respective challenges and opportunities. The speaker’s emphasis on sustainability standard landscape that steadily evolving and presenting new challenges.
Montashir Nahid, GIZ, Bangladesh was the moderator in this panel discussion while Md. Humayun Kabir, Sr. Manager, Quality Assurance, Zaber & Zubair Fabrics Ltd. Bangladesh; Md. Sazzad Hossain, Manager dyeing, Fakir Knitwears Ltd., Bangladesh; Nandana Prasad Hettiarachchi, Pacific Jeans Ltd., Bangladesh; Naishad Desai, Britacel Silicones Ltd, India and Dr. Binay Choudhury, Control Union Certification, India were present as the speaker in this session.
The speakers pointed out some challenges for the implementation of GOTS routine in the panel discussion. These are:
- Traceability of organic materials in the production unit
- Monitoring of the organic process
- Organic chemical management
- Long lead time of organic raw materials
- Organic inventory is time-consuming.
“Proper training and data reservation are essential to maintain traceability,” said Md. Sazzad Hossain, Manager Dyeing, Fakir Knitwears Ltd. Bangladesh.
He informed Fakir Knitwears Ltd is putting a barcode on the dyeing batch instead of yellow mark. The barcode is providing details information for the batch and this is reducing extra hand to do yellow marking.
A number of 250 senior personals from up to 150 different industry organizations and businesses were present in the seminar.