MINNEAPOLIS – Department store chain Target is currently removing a range of misleading t-shirts emblazoned with the words ‘100% Organic’ from some of its stores in the US, after it was noticed they were in fact made from a 50:50 polyester/rayon fibre blend.

“We have started the process of removing the items from stores,” the company admitted to Ecotextile News, “We’ve also locked our registers for this item, so guests shouldn’t be able to purchase them if they happen to find them in a store.”

The move comes after one of our eagle-eyed readers spotted the offending items in a store in Marin City, California.

As part of its publicly stated sustainability goals, Target has committed to sourcing only ‘sustainable cotton’ for its owned brand and exclusive products by 2022, but clearly still has some homework to do on how it communicates the concept of ‘organic’ to consumers, where its products are sourced, and from what materials they are made.

It’s unknown how many customers bought these shirts under the impression they were made from 100 per cent organic cotton. Even though it’s unlikely Target was intentionally trying to make consumers think they were buying an organic cotton tee shirt, the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has strict rules on how retailers use the word ‘organic’ when making claims on consumer goods.

Claudia Kersten, managing director at the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) told us: “We are truly saddened when we find such practice.”

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