In a previous blog post we were excited to announce that our forthcoming collection will present fabrics made of recycled polyester.
Today we’re explaining the standard that we are holding ourselves to in the creation of more sustainable textiles. This standard is the Global Recycled Standard (GRS). In this blog post we define the GRS and look into its history and wider significance in the world.
The GRS: a definition
Sustainability standards hold organisations accountable at a global scale on the sustainability issues that matter.
The Global Recycled Standard (the GRS) is a standard of verification for companies to determine the recycled content of their products. This standard can be applied to finished products or even products still in development. The GRS ensures that corporate claims about the recycled content of products are accurate and up to date.
After all, anybody can claim anything with their products, and the GRS is an independent, third-party assurance. It’s a standard that applies to many different parts that make up the textiles industry, from spinning and weaving to knitting, including dyeing, printing and stitching in more than 50 countries.
A short history of the GRS
The Textile Exchange has been the owner of the GRS since 2011, but Control Union Certifications originally developed it back in 2008. The Textile Exchange defines the GRS succinctly on their own website:
The Global Recycled Standard (GRS) is a full product standard to verify and track recycled raw materials through the supply chain. It also includes processing criteria to prevent the use of potentially hazardous chemicals, and verifies positive social or environmental production at the facilities. The GRS uses the chain of custody requirements of the Content Claim Standard (CCS). – Textile Exchange
Certification to Textile Exchange standards is conducted through third-party certification bodies. The Textile Exchange in turn is a member of the ISEAL alliance, a larger membership organisation that set credible sustainability standards worldwide.
Both ISEAL and the Textile Exchange define international best practices for textile manufacturers and converters when it comes to sustainability. They are dedicated to enacting real, meaningful change in the textiles industry worldwide, from collection design all the way to the finished fabrics.
The GRS stipulates that a product must have 20% recycled content before it can be certified as a business-to-business tool. If a company wants to list the GRS on their consumer-facing labelling, the product must contain at least 50% recycled content. All FR-One qualities from our new ‘Eco’ range will contain a minimum of 50% recycled content.
How GRS certification works
In order to be able to claim the Global Recycle Standard certifies a consumer product, every party involved in the production of it must ensure that they are also certified by an independent certification body - Control Union.
To become certified FR-One as a company is audited on an annual basis – this audit assesses the production, trading and manufacture possesses to ensure the recycled content of our fabrics is authentic.
Likewise all companies involved in the production of our recycled fabrics are audited and certified too – starting with the company supplying the waste product (plastic bottles), followed by the factory converting the plastic bottles to PET (polyester), to the mill weaving the fabric.
To provide a seal of authenticity, each step of the process outlined above is certified with a unique ‘Transaction Certificate’ to authenticate every batch of fabric. This offers us the guarantee that the recycled content is genuine and traceable back to the original discarded plastic bottle providing end-to-end traceability and transparency.
The end-to-end traceability and transparency offered by GRS is such an important step in becoming environmentally conscious and offering sustainable fabrics. GRS certification and GRS certified products is a natural fit for FR-One, aligning with our core values as a company.
Find out more
If this article has piqued your interest, that’s wonderful!
Contact us to learn more about the GRS and FR-One’s inherently fire retardant fabrics.