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RDS - Responsible Down Standard

RDS - Responsible Down Standard

Animal products in textiles

The textile industry becomes increasingly aware of its sourcing challenges.  In particular the use of animal products such as feather and down, wool, angora, cashmere and leather. With the development of the RESPONSIBLE DOWN STANDARD (RDS) Control Union has created a leading standard for animal welfare in down and feather products.  And with our global expertise we can offer services for all animal products in textiles.

The scope of the RESPONSIBLE DOWN STANDARD includes the full down supply chain. From the farms and slaughter facilities (animal welfare) to the down-processors and garment factories (traceability).

Down that is certified according to RDS guarantees:

  • No force-feeding and live-plucking of waterfowl (goose, duck, etc.)
  • Animal welfare based on the five freedoms for farm animals
  • Full supply chain transparency with an integrated traceability system

RDS is globally applicable for the whole down industry, from industrialized supply chains to down collected from small rural areas. The audit and certification process is based on annual visits to certified sites. The traceability of the product is controlled by Transaction Certificates based on the Content Claim Standard.

The traceability system of RDS is based on the CONTENT CLAIM STANDARD of TEXTILE EXCHANGE. This is a chain of custody standard that provides companies with a tool to verify that specific input materials, in this case RDS certified down and feathers, end up in the final product.


Inspections, supply chain mapping & standard development
As a leading international inspection and certification body, Control Union can perform inspections for any required indicator from animal welfare to social compliance and sustainability.  We can also assist companies in mapping and analysing their supply chains. Similar to RDS, we can develop standards for other input materials. A comprehensive and practically applicable standard involves field research, trials and a broad stakeholder review to include insights and support of NGOs, experts, brands and suppliers.

Audit and certification
We perform audits to check if your supply chain complies with a certification standard. If compliance is found, a scope certificate will be issued. To assure the traceability of the product through the certified supply chain a transaction certificate should be issued for each batch or shipment. A transaction certificate can be applied for through our Client information System. This is an online tool that enables you to follow the product in real-time, giving you and your clients full transparency from origin to end product.

Control Union has a global network of qualified and experienced auditors. We offer a wide range of certification programs, in particular related to (organic) agriculture and the textile industry.

We´re pleased to make a free offer for you, just complete our online application to proceed. Please also do not hesitate to contact us for further enquiries, you could call our office between 8:30 AM to 12:00 AM and from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM by phone at +004930 509 69 88-0 or send a fax to +004930 509 69 88-88. We´re also happy to receive your inquiry via email at berlin@controlunion.com.