Responsible Wool Standard (RWS), led by Textile Exchange International, an organization that started activities back in 2002 under the name Organic Exchange, is a voluntary standard that addresses the welfare of sheep and the land they graze on. It was established in 2016 and launched its first RWS certified items (6 blazers and 2 waistcoats) to the market in 2018, during Wool Week. This certification gazes upon farmers’, suppliers’, and brands’ sites to follow a chain of custody (Textile Exchange’s Chain of Custody) that supervises and verifies that every product is in line and complying with its claims (in this case responsible wool) in every level of the supply chain and all the way into the final product. Numerous brands and companies are RWS certified, you can find the official list here.

We mapped Responsible Wool Standard to:

  • Protecting Ecosystems/Low Impact
  • Safe and Fair Labor
  • Supporting Community

The RWS certifies:

  • Companies
  • Products
  • Suppliers and Manufacturers

Cost to get certified:

The cost of certification is made up of the Textile Exchange fee ($250 per certified unit) and the certification body cost, which can vary according to each individual third party body of certification. An estimated price suggested on a Supply Chain Certification document available at their website ranges between $1,500 and $3,00 usd per site, excluding traveling. Subsequent inspections are mentioned to be less.

Do they perform audits on companies:

Yes. They do perform on-site audits through third-party bodies of certification. Every step of the supply chain must be reviewed by Textile Exchange’s Chain of Custody.

Standards listed on their website

Yes. You can find and download the Responsible Wool Standard requirements document right here.