On the sidelights of an interactive session conducted by the Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC) MRSL Foundation, Implementation Director Christina Raab announced that the foundation has begun to take an active interest in the Indian textile value chain for elimination of hazardous chemicals at the input source itself.
In conversation with Textile Excellence special correspondent Venkatesh Raghavan, she disclosed, “We had focused on China, Myanmar, Bangladesh and other Asian countries. We have begun our focus on India more recently.”
She clarified that the funding of this initiative by ZDHC was from the big global brands and Environmental foundations world over. She expressed confidence that India too will sooner than later catch up with the rest of the Asian nations in this drive. Responding to a query on cost-effectiveness on adhering to the conformances, she said, the brands that purchase from the suppliers must insist on the drive.
Earlier in the discussion, it was disclosed that it would be beneficial to get membership of ZDHC Gateway as associations where each individual member in the association is entitled to knowledge sharing and exchange of ideas.
The ZDHC MRSL certification is at four levels; namely level 0, level 1, level 2 and level 3. The higher the level number, the more rigorously the chemical formulation and chemical supplier practice that are reviewed. At level 0, there is only supplier declaration. At level 1, document reviews and tests are conducted. Level 2 involves product stewardship. At level 3 there is chemical supplier site visit. Level 0 is provisional and the other three levels are applicable for Conformation.
Level 0 is offered as a provisional level which for 24 months after which it must be elevated to a higher level. Level 1 conformance is established on the basis of an analytical test and Is again valid only for 24 months after which the certification must be renewed. Level 2 and Level 3 Conformations are valid till their date of expiry.
Dr Christina Raab has more than a decade of experience of working at the interface between sustainability, sustainable development and innovation. She currently serves as Director, Implementation at ZDHC, the forefront industry collaboration for sustainable chemicals management and best practices in the textile, apparel, footwear and leather sectors. In her role at ZDHC she is responsible for the global scaling of ZDHC activities and oversees the ZDHC Academy and the ZDHC Implementation HUB.
Prior to joining ZDHC, Dr Raab held leading positions at several international consulting firms where she worked with a variety of companies, industries and public institutions on holistic sustainability strategies and responsible value chains. Dr Raab started her professional career at the environmental branch of the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation and has a PhD in materials chemistry.