The Bremen Cotton Exchange has become the latest organisation to join Make the Label Count (MTLC) which is lobbying the European Commission to revise and improve its Product Environmental Footprint (PEF) methodology for textiles.
The Cotton Exchange joins organisations such as Plastic Soup Foundation, Changing Markets and Fibershed, as well as luxury brand John Smedley which have all put their weight behind the campaign since its launch last autumn. MTLC’s launch was led by the International Wool Textile Organisation, Cotton Australia and Australian Wool Innovation, and is backed by other natural fibres sectors including silk and alpaca.
“If the PEF development in Brussels continues like this, the natural fibres sector, and therefore cotton, too, will be disadvantaged unfairly by insufficient and partly unusable criteria,” is one of the reasons given by the Bremen Cotton Exchange for joining.
Elke Hortmeyer, responsible for International Relations at the Bremen Cotton Exchange, elaborates further: “This is not about bashing manmade fibres – we accept and acknowledge the need for all textile fibres. It is about ensuring the infinitely important advantages of cotton and other natural fibres are taken into account in PEF comparison. Cotton is a renewable resource, it is biodegradable and provides employment to a huge number of people, especially in developing countries.”
MTLC is lobbying European Commission policymakers to update the PEF methodology to account for issues such as clothing longevity and durability, microplastics, biodegradability and social issues.