From day one, we’ve believed in the differences of organic cotton compared to the industry standard conventional cotton. Put simply, it makes a more luxurious product. It’s also better for everyone who comes into contact with it, from the farmer to you, our customer.
One of the worst statistics we learned when we started our company was that the average life expectancy for a farmer growing conventional cotton in India was 35. We learned that this reality is linked to the increasingly harsh chemicals big agribusiness deploy—but even more significantly, the insurmountable debt these farmers find themselves drives them to suicide because they are so drastically underpaid. The idea of further supporting an industry that drives human beings to an early death was unacceptable to us.
This pushed us to become the first 100% organic Fair Trade Certified cotton bedding company…ever.
So, what exactly is the difference between organic cotton and conventional cotton, and why does it matter? Let us explain.
It Starts at the Seed
Organic cotton, by definition, can’t be treated with any form of harsh or toxic chemicals. The seeds are all-natural, never genetically modified. The soil is rotated, which strengthens it and allows it to retain water better because there is more organic matter in the soil. The weeds that sprout up in a crop of organic cotton are removed by hand, as opposed to treated with man-made chemical pesticides. Our farmers plant marigolds to control pests in their cotton crops. They farm in rain-fed parts of India and naturally use 90% less water than conventional farming counterparts.
Conventional cotton takes a significant toll on the environment. A quarter of insecticides used globally are directly tied to the growth of conventional cotton. Some of the most harmful pesticides known to man are used in this process. Additionally, these monocrops result in soil erosion because they aren’t rotated with all of the other crops in a specific area or field. Lastly, conventional cotton requires intensive irrigation, resulting in water wastage.
It Goes Beyond the Farm
Every choice that follows the harvesting of our organic cotton, is in service to protecting the natural attributes of organic cotton.
When conventional cotton is loomed and prepped for cutting, it first goes through several chemical treatments and baths. It’s not unusual for the dyes used on conventional cotton to contain heavy metals.
There are no chemicals used in the growth of organic cotton. If our organic cotton is ever treated with anything, it’s a natural process, gentle environmental dye or a colorant that’s natural, like clay.
To strengthen our yarns at the spinning stage, we use a natural potato and wheat based recipe (not acrylic). This maintains the organic state of our cotton, as this treatment washes away during dyeing. We follow strict rules and regulations from both GOTS and Standard 100 by OEKO-TEX to ban chemicals and processes that could serious harm to the producers, the product, or you, the customer.
Challenging This and More Industry Conventions
By sourcing a safer, more sustainable raw material we’re able to guarantee a softer, more luxurious product. But our efforts go beyond making products for your home from organic cotton.
Our commitment to Fair Trade USA and GOTS is extremely important to us. It guarantees environmental management to reduce water usage, prohibits child and forced labor, ensures equal rights and pay for women, and gives people livable wages, benefits, standard working hours and mandatory breaks.
Our difference makes a difference. Experience it for yourself by trying our uniquely soft, bestselling Signature Collection.