Certification body Oeko-Tex has introduced its new Eco Passport testing programme following a successful six-month pilot, which verifies whether textile chemicals, auxiliaries and dyes can be used in sustainable textile production.

Eco Passport by Oeko-Tex is a two-step verification procedure that enables manufacturers of textile processing chemicals and chemical compounds such as dyes, performance additives, finishing agents, lubricants, detergents to confirm that their products meet the criteria for environmentally responsible textile production. 

The results of the pilot phase, Oeko-Tex says, were "positive" and the first certified textile chemical producers have already accessed the key benefits of the new Eco Passport concept. 

Based on customer and market feedback during the six month pilot test phase, Oeko-Tex modified the original Eco Passport concept to improve functionality. The workflow between applicants, testing institutes, and the Oeko-Tex Secretariat was refined and the certification and lab testing procedures were optimised.

In the first stage, chemical compounds are checked against a Manufacturing Restricted Substance List (MRSL) that incorporates the Oeko-Tex Standard 100 RSL and the STeP by Oeko-Tex MRSL, both of which are compliant with REACH and ZDHC guidelines.

Next, the textile chemicals, colourants, and auxiliaries are analysed within a laboratory testing framework to ensure they do not contain any unsafe contaminants. 

Compounds that pass the two phases are granted the Eco Passport by Oeko-Tex certification, which indicates the certified textile chemical is safe to use in Oeko-Tex Standard 100 certified textile products and in STeP by Oeko-Tex certified manufacturing facilities.