Calling out Egyptian cotton fakery

Cambridge Towels, Mundo Textil, Welspun certified for Egyptian Cotton Gold Seal

At the New York Market – When the Cotton Egypt Association began pulling home textiles labelled “Egyptian cotton” from retail shelves and testing for validity, they were surprised by the results – and not in a good way.

The ratio of “Egyptian cotton” products containing not a wisp of the fiber: 90%.

“We were shocked,” said Khaled Schuman, executive director of the Cotton Egypt Association.

Schuman shared the story here yesterday evening during a reception at Welspun’s showroom to promote the Egyptian Cotton Gold Seal certification, part of a new DNA-based authentication program designed to rid the supply chain of falsely labelled goods.

Welspun is one of three manufacturers that have qualified for the seal. Cambridge Towels of Canada and Mundo Textil of Portugal have also earned their certifications, he said.

The third-party lab testing has focused in on products in the U.S., Canada, Egypt, Europe, Australia and India. Asked what percentage of products from the U.S. failed to live up to their content claims, Schuman declined to specify. “It is a problem all over – even in Egypt.”

WelspunWael Olama, left, chairman of the Cotton Egypt Association, and Khaled Schuman, executive director

Wael Olama, chairman of the Cotton Egypt Association, told the crowd last night that program’s broader goal is to certify products long before they reach retail shelves. Suppliers certified under the Egyptian Cotton Gold Seal will be randomly tested throughout the manufacturing process.

“We believe this will clean up the supply chain,” he said.

Home & Textiles Today Staff | News & Commentary

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