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The Good Cashmere Standard (GCS) was developed in response to the growing need and demand for more sustainable, transparent and traceable cashmere production. As an independent and voluntary standard for sustainable cashmere, it can help ensure that animal welfare, human rights and the environment are safeguarded during cashmere production. It thereby enables supply chain members from retailers and brands to herders to address challenges such as animal welfare and environmental concerns. On top of that, our Chain of Custody (CoC) Guidelines ensure that the ever-increasing demand for traceability and transparency within the supply chain is also met. Join us and become part of a sustainable and transparent cashmere industry.

Standard Implementation

International retailers and brands that are partners of The Good Cashmere Standard buy the cashmere at world market prices and receive support to smoothly integrate sustainable cashmere into their textile value chains. At the end of the textile chain, the partner retailers or brands pay a nominal licence fee. to ATAKORA Fördergesellschaft GmbH (ATAKORA), responsible for marketing the Aid by Trade Foundation’s trademark rights such as GCS to the Aid by Trade Foundation. The income generated from license fees is used to support herders and cashmere goats in Inner Mongolia, as well as to promote environmental protection. This includes among others funding audits and training programs.
Retailer and Brands

Ready Garment Manufacturer (RGM)

Spinning Mills

Farmers – Cashmere Producers

Traceability and Transparency

Transparency and traceability in cashmere production are core concerns for the Aid by Trade Foundation with regard to the implementation of The Good Cashmere Standard. AbTF thus plays a major role in ensuring that companies and brands can comply with the rising requirements for responsible textile production.

Until now, the implementation of these requirements for processing cashmere wool has been documented in AbTF’s proprietary tracking system, the Cashmere Tracking System (CATS). Going forward, GCS-verified cashmere will be traced through TextileGenesis, A Lectra Company. Both systems assure that the cashmere is traced throughout the textile value chain, separated from non-GCS verified cashmere and that only GCS verified cashmere producers who have successfully completed the audit process and who are registered GCS partners are integrated into the GCS supply chains. Compliance with these requirements is monitored through audits, and only products that have been tracked through an GCS approved supply chain system and contain GCS-verified cashmere may bear the GCS label. Please feel free to contact us for further information.
In addition to its existing tracking systems, The Good Cashmere Standard® (GCS) has partnered with Haelixa to explore new methods of marking GCS-verified cashmere right from the beginning of the production process. The objective is to trace the verified cashmere throughout the entire textile value chain and prevent any blending with conventional cashmere. Haelixa’s traceability solution utilizes DNA markers to provide each textile fiber with a unique and traceable identity. This allows the product’s identity to be tested at any stage, confirming or disproving its origin and authenticity. By employing this system, supply chain risks can be effectively managed, and the authenticity of products can be ensured in compliance with due diligence requirements. Initial pilot projects have already been conducted with GCS verified partners in Inner Mongolia.

GCS Labels

The Good Cashmere Standard® by AbTF can be mentioned in the corporate communications of any partner with a licensing or partnership agreement.
GCS offers many labelling options, such as hangtags, woven labels, and GCS-branded stickers in a variety of formats. For further information, contact us here.

Retailers and Brands

In order to use the GCS verified cashmere and corresponding labelling, retailers and brands must first conclude a licensing agreement for The Good Cashmere Standard (GCS) with ATAKORA, the marketing company of the AbTF. Retailers and brands are required to pay a partnership fee for their membership as well as a volume-related licensing fee that is based on the amount of sustainable cashmere sourced in accordance with The Good Cashmere Standard.

To respond to the growing request for transparent and traceable production processes, every retailer or brand must be registered on the GCS tracking system (CATS) or the TextileGenesis tracking system.
To create even more transparency throughout the textile supply chain, retailers and brands can additionally request DNA-marking of The Good Cashmere Standard fibres.

Drive the change

Ready Garment Manufacturer (RGM)

The Ready Garment Manufacturer (RGM) can start the registration process after a GCS retailer/brand nominates them for producing and supplying GCS products. After the registration the RGM has to buy only from registered supply chain partners such as GCS-registered spinning mills, yarn traders or fabric mills. A list of registerd spinning mills can be downloaded from the GCS website. The Good Cashmere Standard® labels can be ordered at Nilörn Germany GmbH once the registration has been completed. Detailed information regarding registration is available from the AbTF.

Spinning Mills

A spinning mill (SM) purchases dehaired cashmere from a verified The Good Cashmere Standard (GCS) producer and processes it into yarn. Every SM that wishes to register with GCS must fill in the GCS registration form, which includes acceptance of the GCS code of conduct and AbTF.
The SM will get access to the CATS or TextileGenesis tracking system as soon as they are registered and have purchased cashmere from a verified producer. Only when a spinning mill has received the order it can sell GCS yarn to a Ready Made Garment Manufacturer (RGM).

An overview about the GCS registered spinners can be downloaded here.

Cashmere Producers – Herders

Cashmere Producers (buying stations or dehairing stations) need to apply for verification according to The Good Cashmere Standard®. In order to apply, cashmere herders must submit a self-assessment about their operations and conditions on their farms via the cashmere producer. The self-assessment questionnaire has been developed by the Aid by Trade Foundation and covers relevant information on goat husbandry, land management and social aspects within the framework of The Good Cashmere Standard®. Based on the results of the self-assessment, on-site verifications of selected farms are conducted to check the proper implementation of the standard.

The verification encompasses numerous aspects of goat husbandry, fibre extraction, land management and compliance with social requirements and documentation. After the documents submitted have been checked and approved, the Aid by Trade Foundation (AbTF) will initiate the external verification according to the requirements of The Good Cashmere Standard®. Should the verification process be successful, the cashmere producer will receive a certificate, which is valid for one year and allows them to sell cashmere verified according to The Good Cashmere Standard®.
In the course of the verification process, the cashmere producer must adhere to certain reporting criteria, which will be communicated by the AbTF.


Get in touch with us
E-mail address: gcs@abt-foundation.org Telephone: 040 – 25 76 755 – 0