TESTEX Group’s testing laboratory is accredited for compliance with ISO 17025 (STS 0228). The tests are conducted mainly in conformity with EN and ISO standards.
TESTEX Group’s testing laboratory is accredited for compliance with ISO 17025 (STS 0228). The tests are conducted mainly in conformity with EN and ISO standards.

TESTEX Group is an independent Swiss testing and certification organization. As a member of the OEKO-TEX® Association, it is engaged in testing textiles for harmful substances and sustainability.

Chief Marketing Officer Marc Sidler explains on the roles of testing in achieving a sustainable industry during an interview with CTA China Textile & Apparel.

CTA: What is the role of TESTEX as the official OEKO-TEX® testing institute?

Marc Sidler: TESTEX is the official OEKO-TEX® representative in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, and beyond that has further 17 branch offices spamming the globe.

We are the primary contact for regional and national developments in the representative countries.

CTA: What are the differences between MADE IN GREEN by OEKO-TEX®, STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® and STeP certification by OEKO-TEX®? Why a labeling system was set up when certifications had already existed?

Marc Sidler: MADE IN GREEN by OEKO-TEX® is targeted at the end consumers. With an abundance of eco labels, consumers are increasingly demanding more transparency.

MADE IN GREEN is the OEKO-TEX® association’s first traceable textile label. It ensures that the labeled products have been tested for harmful substances, produced under safe and socially responsible conditions, and in environmentally friendly facilities. Each product features a unique ID or QR code that allows consumers to trace its supply chain.

Any company along the textile supply chain can label its finished and semi-finished products with MADE IN GREEN by OEKO-TEX®. Provided that all product components are certified according to the STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® and all relevant supplying production facilities are STeP by OEKO-TEX® certified.
Mr. Marc Sidler, Chief Marketing Officer, TESTEX Group.
CTA: Do you find the national and international regulations and standards are getting more stringent? If yes, in what directions and what aspects?

Marc Sidler: The tragic disaster of the collapse of the Rana Plaza in 2013 spurred international outrage prompting regulations and standards to address the lack of basic working conditions. Furthermore, NGOs such as Greenpeace have heightened the urgency to eliminate releases of hazardous chemicals from textile supply chain and products.

Our certification system provides an answer to these newly arisen demands.

Our oldest and most established certification system, STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX®, is compliant with REACH Annex XVII, GB 18400 and recognized by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) as evidence of compliance with the limit values for total lead content in products for children for the CPSIA.

STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® furthermore takes other relevant international standards and initiatives into consideration, such as ECHA’s SVHC candidate list, Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC), the Detox Campaign, the Stockholm Convention and Prop 65.

Moreover, the ZDHC Programme now accepts ECO PASSPORT by OEKO-TEX® certification as an indicator of conformance with the organization’s Manufacturing Restricted Substances List (MRSL) in connection with the ZDHC Gateway-- Chemical Module.

Sustainable Textile Production (STeP) by OEKO-TEX® is an independent certification system for brands, trading companies and manufacturers along the textile chain to communicate their sustainable production conditions transparently and credibly. The modular structure of STeP certification permits comprehensive analysis and evaluation of all relevant areas of the company with regard to the employment of environmentally friendly technologies and products, efficient management of resources and compliance with optimal working conditions in respect of health, safety and social compatibility.

As our certification system is built on a modular system, so any pre-certified articles will be taken into consideration.
The OEKO-TEX® portfolio offers the textile supply chain with a future proved solution in the ever evolving textile landscape.
CTA: What direction will textile testing go in the future?

Marc Sidler: Credibility is vital for a company’s reputation and brand value. We therefore believe that third party testing will gain in importance. The OEKO-TEX® portfolio offers our customers with a future proved solution in the ever evolving textile landscape.

CTA: How do you comment the industry wide change in responsible chemicals management, sustainability, and transparency?

Marc Sidler: For us, actions speak loader than words. We therefore welcome the developments of the industry towards a more sustainable and transparent future.

Sustainable productions of articles including the chemical management as well as transparency are corner stones of our certification systems. Our customer can therefore be sure that by certifying the articles or production facilities with OEKO-TEX®, they are on course with the latest industry demands.

CTA: Is the Chinese textile industry getting big progress in achieving sustainability?

Marc Sidler: The Chinese government has provided a positive impetus for making the industry more sustainable and in turn let companies leverage on their sustainability effort.

CTA: What is the development plan for TESTEX?

Marc Sidler: We take a holistic approach with our comprehensive portfolio, offering certifications from input (STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® and ECO PASSPORT by OEKO-TEX®) to process (STeP by OEKO-TEX®), right through to output (STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX®, LEATHER STANDARD by OEKO-TEX®, MADE IN GREEN by OEKO-TEX®).

CTA: Do you have any others to share with CTA readers?

We are constantly challenged by the ever evolving demands of consumers, governments and NGOs.

With our certification system which is updated on a yearly basis we make sure that we keep up to speed with latest market development.

Taking the demands of all relevant stakeholders into consideration, our customers have the peace of mind that their articles are compliant with the latest and most significant globally accepted standards and regulations.

TESTEX Group is a member of the OEKO-TEX® Association, and is engaged in testing textiles for harmful substances and sustainability.TESTEX Group is an independent Swiss testing and certification organization operating worldwide with the focus on textile testing. It has been testing, analyzing and certifying with the focus on the textile sector since 1846.

The long-established company has become highly regarded, initially in Europe and subsequently also worldwide, for its high-quality services, its independence and its innovative energy.

TESTEX conducts textile testing solely in its headquarters in Switzerland and at its subsidiary company, OETI, in Austria.