Not-for-profit organisation Organic Exchange has changed its name to Textile Exchange in a move that reflects its wider aim of driving development of the sustainable textile industry around the world.

Details of the name change and expanded direction were made during its annual Global Sustainable Textile Conference in New York City last week.

Until now, Organic Exchange (OE) has mainly focused on building global sales of organic cotton apparel and home textile products, which reached an estimated $4.3bn in 2009. But the broadened focus positions it to serve as the non-profit convener, catalyst, and market-maker for the sustainable textile industry worldwide, the organisation says.

Textile Exchange (TE) will work to increase the global market for sustainable fibres, focusing initially on those that are bio-based, organic, and recycled while retaining a core focus on organic cotton.

It will also tackle pressing textile industry production concerns such as water and air emissions, energy use and its impact on climate change, waste production, and the widespread use of toxic inputs.

Change is vital, it says, given the huge and unsustainable economic, environmental, and social costs of current textile production methods and a projected global population of over nine billion by 2050, all needing clothing and other textiles.

A focus on textile sustainability enables the entire value chain to find cost savings and production efficiencies and pass those savings on to customers while reducing the impact of textile production on people and the environment.

There are also plans to roll out a dynamic website this month, to improve the ability of producers, manufacturers, brands and retailers, funders, and the general public to interact, find important information, locate supply chain partners, and improve traceability, transparency, and integrity in the textile industry supply chain.