APEDA launches certification standards for organic textiles this week

To keep up with the increased demand for organic textiles, the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority of India (APEDA) will soon launch certification standards for the product. National Organic Textile Standards (NOTS) have been recently included under the National Programme for Organic Productions (NPOP). Anand Sharma, Minister of Commerce, Industry &Textile will launch the organic textiles certification standard on July 27, with a fashion show of organic fabrics as the highlight of the event.

The certification standards for organic textiles have been finalised as part of the certification process under NPOP, a legal regime administered by the Department of Commerce as part of the Foreign Trade Policy. India took over the long-standing position of the Global Organic Textiles Standards (GOTS), private standards prevailing in the organic textiles industry by introducing NOTS. India has also the distinction of being the only country in the world to have introduced organic textile standards at the national level, according to Asit Tripathy, chairman, APEDA.

Mr. Tripathy said today the European Commission, Switzerland and the US recognise NPOP standards and the conformity assessment procedures of India (1SO-17011) to be equivalent to their country standards, resulting in great acceptance for Indian organic products in their markets. India is also negotiating with Japan and Canada for equivalence.

India has been a potential supplier of all categories of organic products to the world and exports are growing at an average pace of 30 per cent over the past five years. There are more than 1000 branded organic products produced in India and each one is backed up with certification and traceability.

Last year, India supplied certified organic products to various countries in Europe, Asia and the US to the tune of Rs.1866 crore with an increase of 167 per cent in terms of export value and 111.63 per cent in terms of volume. This included food, cotton and textiles products. Export is a mainstay of organic marketing and is to be expanded further to reach a volume of one billion dollars by 2015. The organic fashion show will showcase products of artisans from different parts of the country producing fabrics using organic fibres and dyes.

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