Recycled Claim Standard (RCS)

What is Recycled Claim Standard (RCS)?

The Recycled Claim Standard (RCS) is an international, voluntary standard that sets requirements for third-party certification of Recycled input and chain of custody. The goal of the RCS is to increase the use of Recycled materials and uses the chain of custody requirements of the Content Claim Standard (CCS).

The objectives of the RCS are:

  • Alignment of Recycled definitions across multiple applications
  • Track and trace Recycled input materials
  • Provide consumers (both brands and end consumers) with a tool to make informed decisions
  • Provide assurance that materials are actually Recycled and in a final product

The Recycled Claim Standard is intended for use with any product that contains at least 5% Recycled Material. Each stage of production is required to be certified, beginning at the recycling stage and ending at the last seller in the final business-to-business transaction. Material Collection and Material Concentration sites are subject to self-declaration, document collection, and on-site visits.

GCL International’s accredited scope for GRS includes:

  • content of recycled fibres in textile products
  • content of recycled metal in metal products
  • content of recycled plastic in plastic products
  • content of recycled paper in paper products

The RCS certification process:

Application and contract

You can apply online for the RCS Certification or complete the Application form and return it to GCL International Ltd. head office or one ofour localoffice.We will use the application details to produce a quotation.

Once the quotation has been accepted, we will ask you to return a signed copy of the quotation and our Scheme Rules.

Preparation for the Initial RCS Certification Audit

The following documents are supplied prior to the initial certification:

  • Briefing information about the RCS Standard;
  • Standard and Implementation Manual;
  • Document checklist;
  • Inspection report which includes inspection checklists, list of suppliers and subcontractors.

Initial Certification Audit

  • Opening meeting
  • On-site Audit
  • Preparation of Audit Report (including Findings)
  • Closing meeting

Following the completion of the inspection, a report detailing the findings is provided.  Subject to the closure of any non-conformances or findings (if any), a Scope Certificate is issued.

Labelling Release

Whenever the client wishes to have its artwork approved, the proposed artwork and Labelling Release form shall be submitted to GCL International for approval.

Transaction Certificate

  • The certified client may request a Transaction Certificate by emailing us;
  • Send a Transaction Certificate Request form and associated documents to us;
  • If approved by us, the Transaction Certificate is issued to the client.

Re-assessment or Annual audit

  • GCL International will communicate with the client to plan for the re-assessment and to determine if there has been any changes, such as: production units, subcontractors, recipes or new suppliers. An audit report must be completed by the client and returned to us;
  • GCL International will conduct the re-assessment;
  • Following the completion of the assessment, a report detailing the findings is provided. Subject to the closure of any non-conformances or findings (if any), a certificate with TE labelling is issued.

General Publications

Contact us

For more information about RCS and its certification process please contact us by telephone or email.