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We all appreciate the natural properties of cotton because of its easy-care, breathability and hypoallergenic properties.
Cotton is an agricultural crop- that's harvested, dyed, and spun into yarn, before being woven (or knitted) into your latest promotional tote bag or tee.
There are several programs working to take that natural fiber and make it even more sustainable either through improved farming processes or recycling it at its end of life.
Organic cotton is grown using methods that promote a more balanced ecosystem having a positive impact on the local environment and the people involved in its farming. Organic production systems support soil health, reduce the use of harmful pesticides and fertilizers, and typically use less water. All cotton sold as organic in the United States must meet strict federal regulations.
At 4imprint we look to verify organic content in line with the United States Department of Agriculture's National Organic Program. This includes such certifications as the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) and Textile Exchange's Organic Content Standard (OCS).Shop all Better Choices™ products meeting these organic cotton standards
Small scraps of material are often left over after a T-shirt or tote bag is created. These scraps are collected and sorted by color before a mechanical process pulls the fabric scraps apart into smaller pieces and then again into individual fibers. The new fiber can be shorter and weaker due to the processing involved so is often re-spun and blended with conventional cotton or polyesters to give it more strength. Recycled cotton can be re-dyed but is often preferred in its more 'natural' softer color palette.Shop all Better Choices™ products meeting these recycled cotton standards
USA- grown cotton is respected around the world for being some of the most-sustainable cotton grown in any country. Why? In part it's the result of a long history of innovative farming, harvesting and strong regulation.
American farmers have not only been innovating to create long-fiber cotton (which gives the strength and fineness that we love), but have been working on water, energy, and greenhouse gas reduction programs for over 35 years. The United States Department of Agriculture rigorously tests, classes and logs every bale produced so buyers at home and around the world can feel comfortable that what they buy is what they get. And, because US cotton is so popular on a global basis, we find it in products made across the world.Shop all Better Choices™ products meeting these usa grown cotton standards
The US Cotton Trust Protocol, a voluntary organization, is working to drive improvement in cotton production even further through six, key-sustainability metrics – land use, soil carbon, water management, soil loss, greenhouse gas emissions and energy efficiency. Its third-party verification program provides additional assurances that the cotton found in members' products is sustainably grown with lower environmental risk.