A new organic cotton certification is set to be rolled out by chemical management specialist Oeko-Tex after it was successfully tested through two pilots.

Oeko-Tex’s new Organic Cotton label is due to be launched in April, tracking cotton throughout the production process and specifically seeking to tackle genetically modified cotton in the supply chain.

Indian textile supplier Milan Group and Turkish cotton producer Akasya have both achieved the new certification in two pilots carried out by German testing service provider Hohenstein.

Oeko-Tex Organic Cotton guarantees that cotton contains less than 10% genetically modified (GM) material as well as confirming it complies with pesticide limits and has an organic origin.

It is being introduced as an add-on for the established Oeko-Tex Standard 100 already achieved by UK businesses. Manufacturers and suppliers whose products have been certified to Oeko-Tex Standard 100 can have their certificates extended to include the Organic Cotton certificate if they meet the criteria.

Ivonne Schramm, head of Oeko-Tex at Hohenstein, said that combining the new Organic Cotton certification with Oeko-Tex Standard 100 was “ideal” as it “ensures environmental friendliness, transparency and socially responsible conditions in a single certification”.

The new certification can be used for finished products as well as for raw fibres and yarns. Blends of organic and conventional cotton cannot be covered.