Traceability of GMO-Free Cotton From Seed to Shirt

           Organic cotton is in strong demand on the world’s markets. To guarantee that manufactured cotton is genuinely organic, laboratory testing is required. Whether cotton and cotton-based end products contain genetic modifications can be reliably verified.

The Hohenstein Group has developed reliable detection methods for an essential parameter of organic cotton. The cotton used is reliably tested for genetic modifications (GMO: genetically modified organism).

The Hohenstein detection system has been specifically optimized for textiles. Testing can be carried out on everything from raw cotton, yarns and fabrics to ready-made end products.

Organic cotton requires, among other things, the exclusion of genetically modified plants. Nevertheless, genetic modifications are repeatedly found in textiles that are labeled organic. Reasons for this range from contaminated seeds, to cross pollination during cultivation, through to contamination of cotton fibers during processing.

Benefitting from GMO screening are: brands and manufacturers that offer organic cotton products, certification organizations labeling cotton as organic and consumer protection agencies.

Hohenstein GMO testing is composed of two steps. The sample is crushed beforehand. The cotton fibers are then mechanically and enzymatically broken down. The genetic material (DNA) is separated from the fibers, and purified through a multi-stage process.

If a specific target sequence (marker gene) is found in the DNA, which indicates a genetic modification. Thus, molecular biological evidence is obtained. Control reactions serve to verify unaltered cotton DNA and to also exclude false-negative results.

Thanks to Hohenstein GMO testing, textile companies, retailers and ultimately consumers are reassured that end products are indeed manufactured from organic cotton.

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