Standards Cell Clothing Textiles

Clothing textiles

The standards cell CLOTHING TEXTILES has been created to assist the sub-sector of clothing textiles. Companies belonging to this sub-sector manufacture products for different kinds of technical garments, such as workwear, protective clothing and clothing for medical purposes and use in "clean rooms". In addition, daily clothing, sportswear and leisure wear are still important products.

Despite a decreasing number of companies and a declining employment, the sector is still mainly export-oriented. The international competition forces the sub-sector to focus more and more on clothing (textiles) with a high added value, by adding extra functionalities to the textiles. In the field of standardisation this leads to the progressive development of standards regarding these new textile materials. These standards require that the manufacturers of these materials and garments substantiate their product claims, that the product does not have any harmful side-effects and that the added functionalities are durable and resistant to (frequent) washing.

This evolution corresponds to the consumer's growing concern for safety and health, which is even strengthened by the European Product Safety Directive (2001/95). In support of this legislation, European standards are being developed to detect certain harmful substances (azo-deystuffs, fire retardants) and to assess the burning behaviour of nightwear and the safety of children's clothing. Certain initiatives have been taken to incorporate a number of requirements of voluntary eco-labels (Oeko-Tex, EU Flower label) into the European standardisation, giving them as such a more binding character.