Manufacturing of textiles, hides/skins and leather

Nordic Swan Ecolabelled clothes and textiles has documented good quality and must have a reduced environmental impact throughout the life cycle of the textile. UN’s International Labour Conventions (ILO) on workers’ rights must be complied with in the production.

The requirements include products of textile fibers, hides and leather. Clothing, accessories, home textiles and textile fibers, yarn and fabrics for clothing or furnishings textiles can be certified with the Nordic Swan Ecolabel.


  • Clothing: Sweater, dress, trousers, skirt, jeans, shirt, top, jacket, workwear, uniforms, socks, and underwear.
  • Accessories: Hat, cap, scarf, belt, bag, handbag, and backpack.
  • Home textiles: Duvet, pillow, towels, bed linen, curtains, tablecloths and upholstery fabrics.

Baby products made of textiles that also contain other materials such as strollers and car seats are covered by the requirements for baby products with textiles.

The requirements include:

  • Use of fibers that are either organic, recycled or based on renewable resources and meet specific environmental requirements.
  • Environmental and health properties of all chemicals used in the textile production. Among other things, the Nordic Swan Ecolabel sets strict requirements to substances that are classified carcinogenic, toxic to reproduction or can damage genetic material. Identified and potential endocrine disruptors on up-to-date lists from EU and national authorities, flame retardants and fluorinated substances, and antibacterial additives incl. nanoparticles are forbidden.
  •  Implementation of a minimum of BAT (best available technology) water and energy efficiency techniques or local production of solar energy in textile production.
  • Test of the quality of the textile, e.g., dimensional change, color fastness and abrasion resistance.
  • Compliance with UN’s International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions on workers’ rights.

Two types of licence: Manufacturing and Products

As of version 5.0 of the requirements (valid as of March 1, 2022), there are two licence types:

  • Manufacturing licence
  • Product licence

Each licencetype requires a separate application. Fees are calculated per licence type. To get a Nordic Swan Ecolabelled product, you must have a product licence.

Manufacturing licence for manufacturers

Generally it will be the factory where the textiles are manufactured that applies for a manufacturing licence. A manufacturing licence gives the right to produce for product licences within the product area specified in the manufacturing licence. A manufacturing licence does not give the right to communicate that any product is Nordic Swan Ecolabelled or meets the requirements of the Nordic Swan Ecolabel.

Requirements related to manufacturing facilities and processes are answered by the applicant in the Nordic Ecolabelling Portal. The product area the applicant wants to get the right to produce within is specified by declaring «textile items» in the Supply Chain Declaration Portal. The product area is defined by, among other things, product type, materials and other input factors such as buttons and colors.

In the declaration of a «textile item», the applicant states which components the specific «textile item» uses. The following components can be declared in the Supply Chain Portal by the applicant and/or relevant subcontractors: Chemicals, fiber, yarn, fabric, accessories such as buttons, padding materials, and leather.

Product licence for products/brand owners

If you want to Nordic Ecolabel a garment or another textile product, you must apply for a product licence. In the application process, you must answer all product licence requirements for the products you want to ecolabel in the Nordic Ecolabelling Portal. You must also state which production licence(s) the product licence is to build on.