Sep 18, 2015
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Linen: ISO regulations within 3 years

Sep 18, 2015

A committee of twelve experts from the ISO WG 22 study group has been charged with translating the protocol developed by CELC's (the European Confederation of Linen and Hemp) Bast Fibres Authority to control the composition of linen in fashion collections into ISO regulations. The process will be finalised within 36 months.

Display of linen-based products at the CELC booth at Première Vision Paris - M.Guinebault/FashionMag

Being called the ISO Working Draft 20706-1- for the time being, the planned regulation will allow laboratories and monitoring companies worldwide to test the composition of linen. The objective is to provide brands and suppliers with a gurantee of dependable fibres of an indisputable quality.

The Bast Fibres Authority was launched in October 2013 with the objective of establishing a common platform among different specialised laboratories. In the course of the manufacturing process, linen's DNA is in fact modified, making its identification difficult. As of today, five laboratories have been certified: Centexbel, Centroot, Cetelo, IFTH and Bureau Veritas.

The development of an ISO regulation was launched as CELC is about to start a major new advertising and promotional campaign, following on from the success of the ‘Be Linen’ campaign, featured for 3 years and funded by the European Union.
Creating 12,000 direct jobs, the industry relies on a world fibre output which is 80% concentrated on the northern coasts of France, Belgium and Holland. While 90% of the French output is destined to the export market. A first survey by CELC last May indicated that 76% of European consumers aren't aware of this dominant position. By contrast, the survey showed how 87% of consumers consider linen to be an innovative fabric. 

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