CmiA Officially Recognised by Two Relevant Sustainability Standards


Cotton made in Africa, an initiative for sustainable African cotton, has been officially recognised by Green Button and been confirmed as an accredited source of raw materials for Cradle to Cradle Certified®.

The Cotton made in Africa standard has now been officially recognised by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), which administers Green Button. This recognition pertains to CmiA cotton as a sustainable natural fibre.

In addition to meeting the human-rights and environmental-protection criteria of the government-run textile certification label Green Button 2.0, licensed companies must apply the meta-label approach to prove that they produce their products sustainably. This recognition means that over 90 companies are currently able to meet meta-label requirements by using cotton from Cotton made in Africa; without a recognised certification seal, products cannot bear the Green Button label. To enable consumers to better navigate the market, Green Button’s meta-label approach recognises only independent, exacting, and relevant certification programmes in the textile sector.

At nearly the same time, the standards organisation Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute recognised the requirements of the Cotton made in Africa standard. Cradle to Cradle Certified is the global standard for products that are safe, circular, and responsibly made. As a result, companies can use Cotton made in Africa cotton produced through the Hard Identity Preserved (HIP) system to meet the Bronze-level requirements in the Material Health category of the Cradle to Cradle Certified Product Standard Version 4.0; by using CmiA cotton produced through the HIP system in their products, they can also meet the Cradle to Cradle Certified Gold-level requirements in three categories: Product Circularity, Water & Soil Stewardship, and Social Fairness. Mass Balance material may be used to achieve the Gold-level in the two categories of Product Circularity and Water & Soil Stewardship as well.

Thanks to these developments, Cotton made in Africa can now offer companies the raw materials they need for their garments and textiles to fulfil the requirements of two additional exacting sustainability standards.

About the Aid by Trade Foundation (AbTF) & Cotton made in Africa (CmiA)
The Cotton made in Africa initiative (CmiA) was founded in 2005 under the umbrella of the Hamburg-based Aid by Trade Foundation (AbTF). CmiA is an internationally recognised standard for sustainably produced cotton from Africa, connecting African small-scale farmers with trading companies and fashion brands throughout the global textile value chain. The initiative’s objective is to employ trade rather than donations to protect nature and improve the living conditions of around one million cotton farmers and their families in Sub-Saharan Africa. Small-scale farmers and ginnery workers benefit from better working conditions. Additional projects in the fields of school education, environmental protection, health, and women’s empowerment support farming communities in improving their living conditions.
Learn more at:

About Green Button
The Green Button is the government-run certification label for textiles manufactured in a socially and environmentally sound manner. What is special about the Green Button is that the entire company is audited to ascertain whether it acts responsibly. Offering individual products for show is not enough.
The label is owned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). BMZ lays down the criteria and conditions for the Green Button, and independent auditors check compliance and ensure that standards are met. The Green Button secretariat has been set up at the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. Learn more at:

About Cradle to Cradle Certified
The Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute is dedicated to powering the circular economy through products, materials, systems, and business models that have a positive impact on people and planet.
Through the Cradle to Cradle Certified® Products Program, the Institute sets the global standard for products that are safe, circular, and responsibly made. For more than a decade, leading brands, designers, retailers, and manufacturers across the value chain have relied on the Cradle to Cradle Certified Product Standard to innovate and optimise materials, products, and systems for immediate and long-term positive impacts.
Cradle to Cradle Certified has long been regarded as the world’s most trusted and advanced science-based standard for designing and manufacturing products that maximise health and wellbeing for people and our planet, providing a comprehensive and holistic assessment framework across different sustainability performance categories.
Cradle to Cradle Certified assesses the safety, circularity, and responsibility of materials and products across five categories of sustainability performance: Material Health, Product Circularity, Clean Air & Climate Protection, Water & Soil Stewardship, and Social Fairness.
The Institute also powers the global shift to a circular economy through partnerships and collaborative initiatives that equip businesses, governments, and other stakeholders with the technical frameworks and knowledge they need to transform the way products are designed and made. Learn more at:

Press Contact: Aid by Trade Foundation
Tina Stridde
Gurlittstrasse 14
20099 Hamburg
Tel.: +49 (0) 40 – 2576 755-12
Mobile: +49 (0)151 171 52 967

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