Quality requirements for textiles
There are three types of requirements for textile quality: statutory requirements, own requirements and unique selling points.
Compliance with the statutory requirements for each country in which the product is sold is mandatory. Various harmful substance parameters, for example, banned azo dyes, flame dispersion criteria and also specifications for textile labelling are regulated at the statutory level.
A distinction must be made here between parameters that are not directly apparent and which are also not necessarily regulated by law, but which should meet the quality requirements of one’s own brand, and those criteria which are directly visible to the consumer, such as processing, fit, colour-fastness, wash-resistance and tear-resistance. Consideration of the sustainability of textiles is also becoming increasingly relevant.
To stand out from the competition with an own product, it may be advisable to define requirements that represent a unique selling point for one’s own goods, for example, functional textiles with optional water fastness in combination with breathability, and textiles that retain their appearance, shape and size, even after frequent washes.
In the event that the textile quality does not meet the test specifications in one or more criteria, it must be first checked which specific parameter is in question. In doing so, there is an obligation to meet country-specific legal requirements. The focus here is on harmful substance parameters and textile-technology parameters.
Compliance with additional parameters which are not regulated by law, is not mandatory, however, they should be taken into account in accordance with own standards relating to quality standards. Rectification of textile quality is feasible, however, a cost estimate should always be carried out as reworking of textiles is always expensive and time-consuming.
“By using raw materials certified in accordance with the STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX®, the cause of any complaints relating to harmful substance parameters can be significantly limited.”
Furthermore, when purchasing preliminary products, safety and quality can be taken into account by considering the corresponding certificates and marks. A considered selection of test parameters protects both the image and the brand of the product.
The STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® differentiates four different product classes, which are classified according to their purpose.
Product class I – Textiles for babies and toddlers up to three years of age, e.g. underwear, clothing and towels
Product class II – Articles which are worn close to the skin, e.g. underwear and bedding
Product class III – Articles which are worn away from the skin, e.g. jackets and coats
Product class IV – Furnishing materials, e.g. curtains and upholstery.