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Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan Set Hydroscopicity Requirement for Undergarments

February 27, 2014

The Eurasian Economic Commission’s requirement for hydroscopicity at no less than six percent in underwear and base layer clothing imported, made, or sold in Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan is in effect beginning July 1, 2014. This has caused a concern for producers using inexpensive man made fabrics, such as nylon, polyamide and polyester, commonly used to produce affordable women’s underwear.

These materials are popular as they are durable and can produce various textures and designs, including lace. First outlined in 2010, the requirement has been in effect in the Customs Union for all new products certified since July 1, 2012. Products that were certified to previous GOST standards before July 1, 2012 will have to comply with the new requirement from July 1, 2014.

Why It Matters
The law will ban underwear that does not reach a six percent threshold for moisture absorption, which aims to prevent products potentially harmful to consumers. Moisture absorption in many of the most popular synthetic material mixtures for underwear is reportedly around 3 to 3.6 percent.

According to the Russian Textile Businesses Union, Russia’s lingerie market is estimated to be worth four billion euros (£3bn), and 80 per cent of the goods sold are foreign made. Analysts have estimated that 90 percent of products would disappear from shelves, if the ban goes into effect as planned.

How UL Can Help
UL can help retailers, importers and manufacturers selling apparel and textiles into the Customs Union meet the moisture absorption threshold set by the Eurasian Economic Commission.


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