What is the Central Database System (CDS)?

The Central Database System (CDS) is a collaborative technical platform for the chain of custody of and Textile Exchange (TE) Global Standard gemeinnützige GmbH (GOTS).

Developed in partnership between the two organizations, the CDS integrates scope certificates, transaction certificates, and volume reconciliation for Textile Exchange’s Organic Content Standard (OCS) and Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) in organic, as well as Textile Exchange’s Content Claim Standard (CCS), Recycled Claim Standard (RCS), Global Recycled Standard (GRS), Responsible Down Standard (RDS) and Responsible Wool Standard (RWS) in other preferred fiber and materials.

Why are we implementing the Central Database System?

  • Centralize Scope and Transaction Certificates and enable real time traceability
  • Increase efficiency, traceability and transparency of the related supply chains
  • Provide standard owners and supply chain operators greater access to certification data for monitoring, evaluation and continuous improvement
  • Prevent duplication of certification by creating a single source for verification and volume reconciliation
  • Provide accurate, up-to-date public data on certified companies for sourcing

Planned Implementation Phases

Digitalization of existing scope and transaction certification process

The primary focus of this phase is to digitalize the existing scope and transaction certification process across all the certification bodies into one system. Data collected in this phase will be used to improve the processes for subsequent phases.

Increase integrity and accessibility

The second phase of the CDS aims to increase integrity and accessibility of the certification process. Key activities to increase integrity  in this phase include volume reconciliation, validation of waste percentages and systematically linking input to output materials. Certified sites will also be given access to the CDS to manage their own data.

Development Milestones

Phase 1 of the Central Database System development focuses on the digitalization and centralization of existing scope and transaction certification process. As such the stakeholder engagement in this phase is mainly with Certification Bodies.

Phase 1: Digitalization of existing scope and transaction certification process
July 2018 Defined high level requirements
August 2018 Signed Letter of Understanding to commence configuration of system
August 2018 Requirements gathering with selected Certification Bodies
October 2018 Project briefing at Textile Exchange Sustainability Conference
December 2019 Requirements gathering with selected Certification Bodies
January 2019 Pre-pilot testing on scope certification process with selected Certification Bodies
January 2019 Pilot kick-off webinar on scope certification process with all Certification Bodies
February 2019 Pre-pilot testing on transaction certification process with selected Certification Bodies
March 2019 Pilot kick-off webinar on transaction certification process with all Certification Bodies
April 2019 Certification Bodies are required to use the CDS to generate scope certificate. Processing and completion of the scope certificate can be done in Certification Body’s legacy system
May 2019 Certification Bodies are required to use the CDS to generate transaction certificate. Processing and completion of the transaction certificate can be done in Certification Body’s legacy system

Key System Functionalities

Phase 1: Digitalization of existing scope and transaction certification process

Only standard owners and Certification Bodies will be given access to the system. CBs will only be allowed to see the data of their clients.

Certification Bodies will be required to enter scope certificate data and generate a CDS scope certification number for the certificate to be considered valid.

Certification Bodies will be required to enter transaction certificate data and generate a CDS transaction certification number for the certificate to be considered valid.

Where possible, Certification Bodies will be required to select associated transaction certificate as input material.

Where possible, CDS will track the running balance of available stock for each certified site and carry out volume reconciliation. If reconciliation is not possible, Certification Bodies will be required to enter an explanation.  

Certification Bodies are required to enter an appropriate waste factor range for a certified site. Discrepancies will be permitted within acceptable range.

Classification of raw materials, product categories, product details and processing categories will be harmonized for consistent publication and reporting of scope and transaction data.

Traceability will be ensured via the CDS. Access to traceability will be possible on non-commercial sensitive data such as country and region.

As part of a change in the OCS and GOTS standards, where possible gins will be required to enter all backward transaction certificate and farm level scope certificate as documentation for raw material input.

The CDS will have a public facing front-end to search for certified suppliers. However, in respect of data confidentiality and privacy, availability of contact information is at the discretion of the certified site.

Implementation Partner

The implementation partner for the Central Database System is ChainPoint. Chainpoint is a cloud-based software platform for monitoring and securing supply chains.

It is currently used by more than 40,000 users worldwide and facilitates some of the most complex supply chains globally.

ChainPoint has a good track record in sustainable voluntary standards, their customers in this field includes Better Cotton Initiative, Goodweave, Rainforest Alliance, Tony’s Chocolonely and  Roundtable for Sustainable Soy.

Data Confidentiality

Maintaining data confidentiality and privacy while preserving content claim is the premise of our chain of custody.

Data will only be used for monitoring and evaluation to improve the performance and integrity of our standards.  No individual data will not be shared without permission. Only aggregate and anonymised data will be used external reporting.