RDS International Working Group 2020-03-03T22:49:42+00:00

Revision of the Responsible Down Standard (CLOSED)

Textile Exchange has completed a revision of the Responsible Down Standard (RDS). To learn more about the scope, objectives, and justification of the need for the standard, you can read the Terms of Reference for the Standard: RDS Draft Terms of Reference. This document is also under review as part of the revision.

The Revision process began in September of 2017, and RDS 3.0 was released in 2019. See details of the process below. You can read more about our process in the Textile Exchange 2018 Standard Setting Procedures.

Standard-SettingEstimated TimelineStatus
Public Invitation for FeedbackJune – August 2017Complete
Convening the International Working GroupAugust – December 2017Complete
Setting the goals, objectives, and other terms of reference for the StandardDecember 2017 – March 2018Complete
Reviewing the existing criteria of the standard and identifying topics to be reviewedMarch – July 2018Complete
Creating the draft version of the new or revised version of the StandardJuly – August 2018Complete
IWG approval of the draftAugust – December 2018Complete
Public Stakeholder Draft ConsultationDecember 2018 – February 2019Complete
Final release of the standardMarch 2019Complete


International Working Group

Participation in the International Working Group is now closed. IWG Members include any interested party, and Voting Rights are granted to those that sign our Charter. See the list of the IWG Members below.

Public Stakeholder Draft Consultation

Participation in the Public Stakeholder Draft Consultation is now closed.  Please visit ResponsibleDown.org/rds-draft-consultation/ for more details.

RDS 3.0 Consultation Feedback Summary (PDF)


You may also elect to receive updates on the progress of the development or revision. To be added to our stakeholder list and receive updates, send an email to ResponsibleDown@TextileExchange.org.

At any time, you may submit direct feedback to the current version of the Standard by using this form.

A Summary of all collected feedback and how it was incorporated will be available to everyone that has submitted feedback. This document will be made available following the release of the new standard or revised version.

Decision Making

During the Development or Revision of a Standard, all decisions are made by consensus among the Voting Members of the International Working Group. You can read more in the Textile Exchange 2018 Standard Setting Procedures.


Meeting Schedule:

  • July 31, 2018 – Draft Review – Voting Members

Meeting Notes:

Date Notes Slide Deck
June 28, 2018 Draft Review Draft Review
June 7, 2018 Audit Methodology Audit Methodology 
May 24, 2018 Small Farm Group Small Farm Group
May 17, 2018 Handling & Management Handling & Management
May 3, 2018 Health / Hygiene, Pest and Predator Control Health / Hygiene, Pest and Predator Control
April 19, 2018 Food & Water / Housing, Stocking Density and Outdoor Access Food & Water / Housing, Stocking Density and Outdoor Access
April 5, 2018 Parent Farms Parent Farms
March 22, 2018 Transport Transport
March 15, 2018 Slaughter Slaughter
March 1, 2018 Training and Education Training and Education
February 15, 2018 Requirement Types  Requirement Types
February 8, 2018 Application of the CCS Application of the CCS
January 10, 2018 Scope of the RDS Scope of the RDS
October 25, 2017 October 25, 2017 Notes October 25, 2017 Slide Deck
October 12, 2017 October 12, 2017 Notes October 12, 2017 Slide Deck
September 27, 2017 September 27, 2017 Notes September 27, 2017 Slide Deck
September 13, 2017 Kick-off Kick-off


Current Drafts

Other Documents:

International Working Group Members

History of the RDS

The first version of the RDS was sponsored by The North Face and developed through a joint effort between Control Union, Textile Exchange and The North Face. It involved considerable research into regional practices, supply chain models, and existing animal welfare standards with the input of a broad range of stakeholders. The North Face gifted ownership of the standard to Textile Exchange upon its completion.

This current version of the RDS was developed by the RDS International Working Group. The members of this group have given generously of their time and expertise, helping to improve the RDS and make it the best possible tool to shift the down and feather industry towards more humane practices.

The RDS provides a resource to the entire industry with the goal of improving the welfare of animals and the chain of custody for down on a global level.