Bamboo viscose, also known as bamboo rayon, is a fabric used for making bedding and garments that are described as being organic or having certifications from OEKO-TEX. However, these two terms mean different things.
Organic is a term that you have very likely heard or seen mentioned in news updates, product packaging, and everyday conversation. One example in this regard would be sustainable bamboo sheets, which many of us are conditioned to interpret as being good for us because of low toxicity. Many others will automatically think that bamboo viscose is eco-friendly.
What about OEKO-TEX? Would you prefer to make your bed with linens that bear this certification? Let us discuss why looking for certification on bamboo rayon fabric is a smarter move than just assuming you are getting organic products.
What Does Organic Really Mean for Bamboo Viscose?
In the 2021 United Nations Climate Report, the word "organic" is used numerous times for the purpose of calling attention to farming practices that should be used in order to mitigate the pressing issue of climate change; this is important to remember because it makes it easier to understand what this term really means.
Marketing professionals have latched onto this term to promote products and services that appeal to certain lifestyles. On a personal level, the word evokes mental imagery that reminds us of Mother Nature. Some marketers also refer to these products as being sustainable even though these two words are not necessarily synonymous. In the farming and textile industries, the term refers to cultivation and harvesting techniques that are environmentally friendly, which means they limit the use of pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers.
When you see some bamboo rayon fabric that is being labeled as organic, chances are the stalks were organically grown. This is great insofar as sustainability because this type of farming is a good method of soil conservation and ecosystem protection. As long as the label tells the truth, you can think of the rayon made from bamboo as being socially responsible. There is also the matter of chemicals not being used during the farming process, but this may not always extend to textile production.
What Does OEKO-TEX Certification Guarantee for Bamboo Rayon Fabric?
Eco-friendly bamboo sheets that are made with organically grown fibers will do their part to save the planet, but they are not guaranteed to have been certified by the International Association for Research and Testing in the Field of Textile and Leather Ecology. Since 1992, this entity has been issuing certifications that inform consumers about the human and ecological safety of products such as sustainable bamboo sheets.
When you see linens or garments that display an OEKO-TEX certification, you can rest assured that the products are free from chemicals that can cause potential health issues. Furthermore, you will also know that the textile producer is sourcing raw materials from responsible farmers doing their part to save the earth. In fact, you can verify the certificate by entering the label’s certificate number on the OEKO-TEX website.
This association operates more than a dozen testing facilities and approximately 70 offices around the world. Brands that wish to obtain this certification must furnish product samples for laboratory testing; they are also expected to report on their sourcing and manufacturing processes prior to allowing a visit and audit from regional OEKO-TEX representatives.
OEKO-TEX Vs. Organic and How These Apply to Rayon Made from Bamboo
The various UN initiatives to mitigate the environmental damage exacerbating climate change will likely result in an avalanche of organic products that will be available to future generations, but this does not mean that all products will be able to obtain an OEKO-TEX certification.
Not all textile producers are ready to reduce their use of chemicals to the levels required by OEKO-TEX. If you are looking for bamboo viscose that is not only sustainable but also devoid of chemicals that may irritate your skin, you should be looking for OEKO-TEX certifications.