Textile Exchange announces Responsible Wool Standard (RWS) for public stakeholder review

Textile Exchange announces Responsible Wool Standard (RWS) for public stakeholder review up to June 3, 2016

During the first 60 days of public stakeholder review, we received a large amount of feedback. Comments were received from wool growers, certification bodies, brands, supply chain companies and NGOs. Almost half of the commenters were wool growers. In addition to the written feedback we also held multiple conversations with wool industry members, farmers and welfare experts. The feedback document is available on the RWS website. It includes all of the comments we received during the review process, along with our responses to each one.

TextileExchangeIn addition to the detailed input on the specific requirements, we heard frequent feedback that the standard was too complicated, and the requirements were too prescriptive.

We listened. We have worked hard to reduce and simplify the requirements and have moved some of the details into the guidance document, allowing farmers more flexibility in how to meet the requirements. We have significantly restructured the standard and support tools in an effort to help the farmer work through it in a logical way.  In addition, we have further developed the guidance that will guide the farmer through the requirements of the standard in preparation for the audit. 

What you will see now is a much more complete pair of documents – the Standard and the Workbook, with almost all of the elements that will be included in the final version. Please visit the RWS website to view or download these documents here

While we welcome input on all parts of the standard, we suggest that you focus on the Animal Welfare in the Standard document (pages 12-24) and on Land Management in the Workbook document (pages 17-28). The latter includes the questions that the auditor will use to assess each requirement, along with scoring guidance, and will give you a better sense of how the requirement will be applied. Your feedback on all points is welcome.

We have adjusted the documents and feedback process for the second round of public stakeholder review:

• Please read and review the sections that interest you.

• Fill in the Feedback Form.

•Submit the form to Hanna@TextileExchange.org by June 3, 2016.

About the Responsible Wool Standard

The RWS is intended to be a global benchmark forwith the best possible tool to:

•          Recognize the best practices of farmers around the globe.

•          Ensure wool comes from responsibly treated sheep, and from farms with a progressive approach to managing their land.

•          Build communication and understanding between farmers, consumers and brands.

•          Provide a robust chain of custody system from farm to final product to ensure consumer confidence in RWS products.


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