Update on suspension of the accreditation of Control Union (India) from GOTS certification – reg.

Cir(031)/2023                                                                               March 21, 2023


Dear Sirs/ Madam,

Sub.: Update on suspension of the accreditation of Control Union (India) from GOTS certification – reg.

This is to inform you all that On March 3, IOAS, an independent third-party Accreditation Body, following due process, suspended the accreditation of Control Union (India) from GOTS certification as a result of failure to comply with applicable requirements of GOTS and management of non-conformities identified from complaints. (Also affected are all scopes of ISO/IEC 17065 and Textile Exchange.)

Since this sudden decision affected the entire cotton based Textile Value Chain and as reported by many of the members that due to this suspension, even the certified Organic Cotton sourced before 3rd March 2023 based on the certificates issued by the Control Union is facing severe issues at all levels of its value addition, CITI took up the matter with concerned authorities of IOAS, GOTS, and CU and requested to provide a window of at least 3 months for issuing certificates to products in the pipeline with the active intervention of GOTS to ensure the credibility of the products.

In this regard, CITI received a clarification from Shri Rahul Bhajekar, MD-GOTS stating that TCs that were issued by Control Union India before their suspension remain valid unless specifically withdrawn by Control Union themselves.  Similarly, material that has received GOTS certification also continues to retain that status.

To mitigate potential value chain disruptions, GOTS has the following in place to assist affected companies:

  1. CU India is required to inform their clients of their suspension and guide them through any disruptions that this may cause.
  2. Aside from CU India, there are currently eight other GOTS-approved Certification Bodies operating in India, ensuring that market demand can be met. A full list of approved CBs can be found on the GOTS website.
  3. Should a certified entity want to migrate to a different Certification Body, they should refer to the relevant GOTS policy. This policy outlines the guidelines and procedures for transferring certification from one certification body to another.

Further GOTS has also released a statement on their website on 20th March 2023 stating that “GOTS has followed all the accreditation requirements and submitted all required documentation for further consideration by IOAS.  We are currently awaiting a response from the accreditation body.”

CITI is actively following up the matter with all the relevant authorities. Members are requested to flag any additional issue being faced by them (if any) due to this suspension positively by tomorrow so that the same can also be taken up with the concerned authorities.

This is placed for your information and necessary action.

Thanking you,

Yours faithfully,

(Chandrima Chatterjee)

Secretary General