Oeko-Tex®-Standard 100 essentially signifies that a material has passed tests for harmful substances in every phase of its processing and thus presents minimal health risks. The limits the standard places on such substances go beyond the already strict requirements provided for by law. Azoic and other allergenic dyes are prohibited, for example, and restrictions also apply to further substances:
- Formaldehyde is completely prohibited or restricted according to the applicable international laws.
- The pesticide content of materials must not be higher than that of fruits and vegetables.
- Carcinogenic (or suspected to be carcinogenic) and allergenic dyes are prohibited, meaning that materials must be pH-balanced and contain no questionable pigments.
- Clothing for infants must be resistant to perspiration and spittle and present no concerns should it find its way into children’s mouths.
Various textile manufacturers can apply for Oeko-Tex certification, including weavers, knitters, and thread producers. However, only those that undergo strict testing and monitoring procedures and provide for verifiable quality assurance are allowed to sell products bearing the Oeko-Tex®-Standard 100 label.