Become a member

We are glad that you are interested in joining the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles. On this website, we put together questions and answers concerning the membership and the Application for Membership.

Who can join the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles?

Members from these stakeholder groups can join the Partnership as ordinary members:

  • Private sector: companies in the textile and clothing sector as well as in retail
  • Non-governmental organizations which are active in the field of sustainable textiles
  • Trade unions which are active in the field of sustainable textiles
  • The Federal German Government represented through Federal Ministries
  • Non-commercial standards organizations which are active in the field of sustainable textiles

Scientific institutions or Federal government authorities that deal with the issue of sustainable textiles as well as other organizations in exceptional and justified cases can be accepted as advisory members.

Why should you join the Partnership? What obligations does a membership entail?

In the “Partnership for Textiles” – in brief “Partnership” – about 130 companies, organizations and ministries have come together. They are advocating for more sustainable conditions in the production of textiles. Their common goals: social, ecological and economic improvements in the textile supply chain. The idea: where a single company or a single organization is not able to change anything, many members can achieve something together. In the Partnership, members concentrate their singular activities, exchange their experiences and develop solutions together. This is not only more effective in reaching a sustainable textile sector, but also more efficient and cost-effective than working on these issues individually. The signing organization is committed to pursuing the goals of the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles actively and implementation-oriented. This is done, for example, by participating in Projects and Expert Groups or so-called Partnership Initiatives. Members are obliged to participate in the “review process”. In the framework of the reviews, progress of the Partnership members and the Partnership itself as well as problems in the implementation are identified and measurements are developed. Members will publish an annual “roadmap” in which they commit to achieving certain goals. In case of failing to move towards the objectives or to make adequate progress, sanctions can be imposed, culminating in an exclusion from the Partnership.

How can I join the Partnership?

If you are interested in joining the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles, we kindly ask you to fill out the Application for Membership and send it to the address mentioned in the form.  The Steering Committee will decide on admission to the Partnership.

By signing the Application for Membership, you adhere to the following Declaration of Membership:

The undersigned organization undertakes to actively pursue the objectives laid out in the Plan of Action of the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles, with a view to implementing them. The Partnership members are aware that the Plan of Action of the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles sets out ambitious objectives providing a framework for action directed at members. While being mindful of the de facto conditions in the textile value chain, the Plan of Action will undergo continuous adaptation according to progress made during the Implementation of the framework for action.

As set out in the Plan of Action, progress made and challenges encountered while pursuing and achieving the objectives will be presented in a progress report. Partnership members will make every possible effort to integrate the majority of businesses* in to the Partnership and to ensure common standards at European and international level, also to prevent a potential distortion of competition.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the team of the Partnership Secretariat.

*The aim is a value of 75 % of the German market volume. The national retail sales of the textile industry (TW list) in Germany serve as point of reference.

Dr. Johannes Merck, Otto GmbH & Co. KG, (C) Otto Pressebild

Dr. Johannes Merck, Otto GmbH & Co. KG

The biggest opportunity the Textiles Partnership offers is to jointly drive developments that couldn’t be advanced single-handedly.”


Claudia Kersten, GOTS, (C) Otto Kersten

Claudia Kersten, GOTS

“Every company that orders sustainable products here, is putting a pull-effect on its entire supply chain. But this doesn’t come for free. The Textiles Partnership gives us the chance to apply the really big lever.“

Frank Zach, DGB-Bundesvorstand, Abteilung Internationale und Europäische Gewerkschaftspolitik, (C) Ralf Steinle

Frank Zach, Head of Section, Department for International and European Trade Union Policy, German Trade Union Confederation (DGB)

The Partnership is supposed to seriously bring transparency into the textile chain and topics such as living wages or participation in decision-making can finally be dealt with on a broad basis.“

Daniel Hopp, Hopp KG, (C) Daniel Hopp

Daniel Hopp, Hopp KG

I am convinced that we are on the right path. On their own, no one can improve the production conditions in the supplier countries in a sustainable manner. But together we are capable of achieving continuous improvements and set ever more ambitious goals.“