Announcement of Our Participation in The ZDHC Roadmap to Zero Programme
We, Japan Textile Products Quality and Technology Center (known as QTEC in abbreviation), are pleased to announce that we have officially joined and became a contributor of the ZDHC Roadmap to Zero Programme in the service provider category as of January 2019. It is the result of our sustained drive from the last year with our major policy of “Efforts of supporting sustainability in the textile industry in Japan” that has been promoted upon growing concern of hazardous chemicals worldwide.
ZDHC is a coalition formulated by participating global brands, relevant corporations, and associations that are leading proper chemical control in the textile and footwear industries worldwide.
Even though it was known that there are some hazardous chemicals among the chemical substances used in the world and so there are the restricting regulations in each country, the subjects of restrictions were not uniformly listed among the countries. This has been the problem to discuss for solution, and as a matter of fact the necessity of strategical chemical control was agreed in the discussion at the United Nations. However, it has not been of much progress in establishing conformity in the restriction contents and developing more restrictive regulations, for various reasons. After researchers and environment NGOs have come up with the proposals to comply with regulations and strengthen the efforts, ZDHC was formed in 2015.
In the perspective of chemical control, it is said that legal restrictions of each country began in the 20th century as countermeasure to respond to the growing problems, then in the 1990s a number of standards proposed by private testing institutes came out, and finally since 2010 some global corporations have led the optimization of chemical control by forming coalition to implement more effective chemical control.
Based on the viewpoints of sustainability, QTEC shall conduct the activities supporting occupational health among the people working in the industry and environmental protection by participating ZDHC that aims to eliminate and substitute hazardous chemicals in the production processes, instead of just reacting to the restrictions on the final products that may contain hazardous chemicals.
The participation of QTEC in ZDHC shall bring following advantages. It shall make it possible to provide support and information in Japanese to the companies that are directly or indirectly engaged with the ZDHC Signatory Brands. Secondly, it shall be possible for us to support brand companies and retailers in the textile industry that intend to implement optimized and extensive chemical control in accordance to the ZDHC methodology. It is also planned that we support to achieve optimized chemical control such as process control among the providers of textile materials, and moreover, it shall be possible for us to support chemical products manufacturers in the textile industry to conform them with ZDHC standard.
ZDHC was founded in 2011 as a coalition to seek optimized chemical control, and currently 27 brand companies, 76 value chain affiliates and 18 industrial associations and governmental institutes belong to it at the point of the end of December 2018, with the head office in Amsterdam, Netherland.
ZDHC has its characteristics that it engages with restrictions of chemical substances in the manufacturing processes, instead of showing restrictions to the final products in a simple form of Restricted Substances List (RSL), seeking zero discharge of hazardous chemicals to our environment. ZDHC uniquely determines the chemicals that should be rejected and keeps its effort to reject them. The substances subjected to rejection covers not only the legally restricted substances but the substances that are considered risky. These substances are proclaimed in the ZDHC Manufacturing Restricted Substances List (ZDHC MRSL).
The ZDHC MRSL, together with the ZDHC Wastewater Guidelines also uniquely determined by ZDHC, is adopted by another global coalition called SAC (Sustainable Apparel Coalition), and it is aimed to make the ZDHC MRSL the virtually global standard as the control method of chemical substances.
In East Asia, international collaborations had already begun, for example with the China Textile Industry Association (CNTAC) that has collaborated with ZDHC since 2013 to jointly hold the meeting of optimized control of yearly determined chemical substances. In addition, the testing institutes of Korea also joined ZDHC.
WE, Japan Textile products Quality and Technology Center (
QTEC), are the third party testing institute with the head office in Tokyo originally founded as the consolidation of three institutes, Japan Textile Sundry Goods Inspection Foundation, Japanese Knitted Goods Inspection Foundation, Japan Sewing Goods Inspection Foundation respectively, and we intend to contribute to the development of our society through improvement of quality and technology based on our assessment and instruction skills.
We conduct testings on garments, home products, down & feather products, industrial materials and products, product inspection, certification of factories, products, and personnel. There are 10 offices and testing centers within Japan and 8 testing centers overseas. We also dispatch our expert to the technical committee of international standard body ISO and collaborate with overseas testing institutes for more extensive international activities.
We have swiftly tackled the issues of sustainability to broaden our business, and please let it be known that we have joined ZDHC utilizing our past experiences of factory audit.
Japan Textile Products Quality and Technology Center (QTEC)
Toshiki Tasaka (Mr,) Director, Business Control Department