Ensuring that our babies have wholesome and healthy food inside their bodies is only a part of caring for them when they’re little. While it’s true that we are what we eat, it’s also true that we want our babies to be comfortable and free from irritants and potentially harmful substances on the outside of their bodies.
The USDA and the FDA are American entities charged with creating and upholding certain standards for what we ingest and crops that are grown. However, there is no similar government organization to perform this function for the clothing we wear. And even the established standards may not be adequate for some parents to feel safe buying and using certain products for their children. Even if the cotton itself is certified as organic by the USDA, there may be dyes, metals, and chemicals used in the finished product, and these are not ok for some of us to put on our babies!
There are, in recent decades, more and more international organizations trying to get the truth out to consumers about the products they’re buying. These groups, such as the Organic Trade Association, the International Association Natural Textile Industry, and the Japan Organic Cotton Association, are instrumental, private trade organizations influencing standards on fibers like cotton, wool, cashmere, hemp, bamboo and soy. They are also attempting to make more accurate labeling for consumers so it’s clear which chemicals may have been used in the manufacturing processes of clothing.
And this is only for clothing made from fibers found in nature!
There are also articles of children’s clothing that are made from synthetic fibers, the manufacturers of which don’t even pretend to be using healthy, natural elements for their products. Many of these items are made with petrochemicals, acrylic, and other manmade materials that may be carcinogenic or cause hormone disruption. Many of these chemicals used to treat fabrics, making them flame resistant, for example, never wash out and may continue to release chemical residue for the life of the garment.
At Udderly Organics, we are passionate about informing you about the latest trends and research concerning the products we buy for our children. “Organic” as a label is an ever-changing term, so due diligence is important. Natural fibers are best for our babes, and we support the processes and organizations that are helping standards evolve to meet the needs of parents everywhere.