The RCS and GRS are designed to boost the use of recycled materials

The Recycled Claim Standard (RCS) and Global Recycled Standard (GRS) set the criteria for the third-party certification of recycled materials and chain of custody. The GRS includes a higher (50%) minimum recycled content percentage and additional social and environmental requirements related to processing and chemical use.

We’re moving to a more unified standards system

In 2021, we began a sweeping revision of our standards framework to develop a harmonized system that incorporates our current suite of standards, and outcomes focused on our climate and nature strategy. We are currently finalizing the pilot version 1.0 of the unified standard, to be released in the first half of 2024. Sites that are currently certified, or pursuing certification, to our current standards should keep an eye on updates as the timeline progresses. For more information on the timeline, transition, and relevant information regarding recycled materials, please visit the Standards Transition page.

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Increasing transparency and assurance for recycled fibers

The RCS and GRS have three main objectives:

  • Align definitions of “recycled” across different applications.
  • Verify recycled content in products.
  • Give brands and consumers a means to make informed buying decisions.

The GRS has additional aims:

  • Reduce the harmful impact of production on people and the environment.
  • Provide assurance that products are processed in a more climate-friendly way.
  • Encourage higher proportions of recycled content in products.


recycled fabric scraps.

Dive deeper into the RCS and GRS


Previous revisions and changes

GRS 4.0 and RCS 2.0 were released on July 1, 2017 after a multi-stakeholder review.

Read the feedback summary

From April 1 to May 31, 2021, we sought open feedback on the current version of the Global Recycled Standard 4.0 and Recycled Claim Standard 2.0.

Read the feedback summary

In July 2021, we began our transition from eight standards to one unified standard. This GRS 4.0 and RCS 2.0 revision process will now be rolled this transition.

Understanding the standards transition

Take the next steps in your certification journey

Brand and retailers

Start sourcing certified recycled materials or get certified yourself.


Use our standards to offer products certified to contain recycled content.

Find a certified company

Consult our directory to confirm whether a company is certified or to find suppliers and manufacturers that carry the RCS or GRS.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have a question not answered here, get in touch with us directly, and we’ll be happy to answer it for you.

Are Textile Exchange standards recognized globally?

Yes, all our standards apply globally. You can use our logos worldwide as long as you meet the requirements for logo use and claims.

Do you have translations of your standards available in other languages?

Visit the Document Library to see all standards documents. For some, translations are available.

What are the main differences between the GRS and the RCS?

The RCS and GRS are the same, except that the GRS is a more rigorous standard. In the GRS, there is a higher minimum content percentage (50%) and additional processing requirements (social, environmental, and chemical) that have to be met.

In the GRS, it mentions that the minimum content percentage is 20%, but in the Standards Claims Policy, it says the minimum is 50%. What does this mean?

You can use the GRS as a business-to-business tool for any products that contain at least 20% recycled content, but if you want to use consumer-facing labeling, the product must contain at least 50% recycled content.

My company is already certified to the GRS. Does this mean I am also certified to the RCS?

No, the GRS certification does not automatically include RCS certification. However, you can easily add the RCS to your existing certification by contacting your certification body. Typically, another audit is not necessary because the requirements of the RCS are covered by GRS as well. The best option is to request certification to the GRS and RCS at the same time.