Ecological Textiles produces woven and knitted fabrics of organic cotton in Turkey. This means that the fabrics are produced following our specs, in factories with which we have a long and stable working relation. Cotton is grown in many parts of the world, so why do we produce in Turkey?
1) We primarily choose to work with the so called Aegean cotton because of it’s high quality. Aegean organic cotton is grown in the western and southern districts close to the Aegean Sea and has specific characteristics, such as its long fiber length and it’s high spinnability. It is famous for it’s beautiful colour and softness, and is known to be one of the best qualities in the world.
2) Turkish organic cotton is guaranteed to be GMO-free, because the Turkish Biosafety Law forbids GMO in the country. Consequently there have been no scandals involving traces of GMO on organic cotton in Turkey (in sharp contrast with India).
3) Turkey is the world’s second largest producer of organic cotton and has a big manufacturing industry. In Turkey itself this offers proximity of raw material to textile processing. For us, the proximity to Europe also reduces transportation and results in a lower carbon footprint.
About organic cotton
Cotton is the most commonly used fiber for clothing textiles. Of course! Cotton feels comfortable, is soft on the skin, fairly strong and can absorb about twenty percent moisture before feeling wet. Organic cotton fabrics such as the knitted qualities in our collection feel cool because cotton is a good heat conductor. The heat insulating capacity is therefore low. That makes cotton an ideal material for making summer clothes! However, thicker and heavier cotton fabrics and yarns can also be used for making winter clothing. Organic cotton is skin-friendly, suitable for the sensitive skin, and easy to maintain.
One of the major objections to 'conventional' cotton is that it is sprayed with herbicides and insecticides. According to some studies, a quarter of the pesticides used worldwide end up on the cotton fields. It has been calculated that about 125 grams of agricultural poison is used to make a normal 250-gram T-shirt. The consequences for people and nature are disastrous. This applies in the first place to cotton workers.
A second objection is that cotton is a 'thirsty' plant that needs lots of water. Unfortunately, organic cotton is also increasingly being put away as an environmentally unfriendly plant for that reason. This picture is not entirely correct. Cotton is counted among the xerophites, plants that are able to limit their water needs. This can be due to the shape and structure of the leaf, but also due to a strong root system. An important part of cotton cultivation is without artificial irrigation, even in countries like India. In many areas the normal rainfall is enough to be able to grow cotton. On the other hand it is undoubtedly true that the desertification that occurred in some areas, can be traced to cotton cultivation. This is the case, for example, with the drying up of the Aral Sea. However, a major cause here is a destructive agricultural policy that has led to depletion of the earth.
In the cultivation of organic cotton, no pesticides are used, natural enemies (insects) are combated in an environmentally friendly manner. Weeds are not sprayed but removed mechanically or manually. Picking the cotton balls is done manually, without defoliating the plant first. GMO is forbidden.
In addition, much attention is paid to the necessary restoration of the soil (through natural fertilization) and to water management.
All our 100% organic cotton fabrics are made in Turkey. The Turkish cotton is of excellent quality (long fibers, strong and soft) and the country has a fairly big cotton industry. Farming and processing take place in the same region. Transport to our Ecological Textiles warehouse is possible by truck.
Cotton is grown in various regions in Turkey. Ecological Textiles only uses so-called Aegean organic cotton, which is grown and processed in the region south-east of Izmir. We have built up a good working relationship with weaving and knitting companies here since 2005. The factories we work with are all GOTS certified.
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Please contact us when you have a question or want to know more about our fibres, dyes, yarns and fabrics. Just drop an email or give us a call.
Of course you want to see and feel the fabrics that are so important in your creative process. We will be glad to provide you with samples.