The event was held in Izmir, in which region the first organic cotton in Turkey was grown.
Because Turkey is the country with the third most GOTS certified facilities worldwide, following India and Bangladesh, it was also chosen as venue for the GOTS Annual Meeting of the GOTS Advisory Council, the Standards Committee and the entire GOTS operational team.
The seminar was split in three sessions. After a general GOTS introduction including the newest figures and buying markets updates, standard criteria and labelling requirements experts from brands and processors as well as certification bodies shared their views.
Certified processors emphasized the risk management GOTS provides, manufactures pointed out how GOTS certification benefits their reputation. Certification bodies explained how the certification can serve as assurance for end consumers and brands.
“If we aim for a more sustainable production, the shortest way of achieving it is organic. We need to embed the word organic into everybody´s mind,” said Burak Sertbaş, Aegean Apparel Exporters’ Association Chairman.
After the third – very lively – interactive group sessions the participants presented concrete outcomes and proposals: Consumers already actively inform themselves on organic production and hold brands within the domestic market responsible.
Therefore, more consumer information about GOTS’ benefits and more visibility is needed. Achieving GOTS certification is perceived as challenging due to the strict and different requirements but provides competitive advantages in comparison to non-certified goods, on the domestic as well as on foreign buying markets. It is also an advantage to be geographically closer to the big buying markets in Europe.
“I believe the Turkish Market has a great potential in becoming more and more organic and GOTS plays an increasingly important role in this shift,” said Elif Yaraşık, GOTS Representative Turkey.
THE NUMBER OF CERTIFIED FACILITIES: 5760
In 2018, the number of certified facilities showed an increase of 14,6% from 5,024 to 5,760 facilities.
Certified facilities are now located in 64 countries around the globe, GOTS certification covers the processing of certified organic fibres along the entire supply chain from field to finished product. The progress is seen in both production and consuming regions.
Countries and regions with the largest growth in percentage in 2018 in GOTS certification are: Bangladesh (+29%), North America (+25%), Pakistan (+23%) and South Korea (+23%). In terms of total numbers, the highest increase is reported from India (+315), followed by Bangladesh (+155) and Europe (+98). The top ten countries in terms of total number of certified facilities are: India (1973), Bangladesh (689), Turkey (519), Germany (500), Italy (340), China (301), Pakistan (238), Portugal (215), USA (127), and South
Korea (85). The 18 GOTS accredited independent Certification Bodies reported more than 2.02 million people working in GOTS certified facilities. “The increasing number of certified facilities aligns with the common desire to solve sustainability related problems. It confirms that GOTS is seen as part of the solution. Company leaders use GOTS as risk management tool and as market opportunity. Consumers value the verifiable certification from field to finished product.” said GOTS Managing Director Claudia Kersten at the GOTS Annual Meeting in Izmir, Turkey.
During the year 2018, Turkey has secured its 3rd place on the globe, with 519 certified facilities. In 2018 growing interest in GOTS from different stakeholders of the supply chain and the industry was noticeable. The Turkish industry continued to establish stronger relations with GOTS and showcased it as solution for sustainability in their product range.