Public encouraged to comment on the draft for washable, reusable sanitary towels | Western Cape Government


Public encouraged to comment on the draft for washable, reusable sanitary towels

28 August 2019

The Western Cape Department of Social Development encourages the public to have their say on the DRAFT SOUTH AFRICAN STANDARD for the manufacture of washable, reusable sanitary towels.

This standard covers the requirements and test methods for washable, reusable sanitary towels for external use.  Furthermore, this standard does not apply to disposable sanitary towels.

“The introduction of such standards could be a game-changer for the sanitary industry in South Africa because the consequences of inadequate menstrual management extends beyond the classroom to health, dignity, psycho-social wellbeing, employment, and participation in society. Focusing on a holistic approach to menstrual hygiene management will go a long way to providing an interventional edge in this field,” says Minister Fernandez.

SABS, the technical committee responsible for the preparation of this standard has reached consensus that the draft should become a South African standard.

The objective of the SABS Standards Division is to develop, promote and maintain South African National Standards. This objective is incorporated in the Standards Act, 2008

To date, there has been no standard available for the manufacturing of washable and reusable sanitary towels. Yet, it remains one the most economical, environmentally friendly and efficient modes of dealing with menstruation.

Moreover, other African nations across the continent have taken the lead in this area of certifying reusable pads. In South Africa, a leading store is selling reusable products. Internationally, it is becoming more and more popular because of its health and environmental benefits. 

The draft document is now made available by way of public enquiry to all interested and affected parties for public comment, and to the technical committee members for record purposes.

Please note: the closing date for public comment: 25 September 2019

Any comments should be sent by the indicated closing date, either by mail, or by fax, or by e-mail to:

SABS Standards Division

Attention: Compliance and Development department

Private Bag X191



Fax No.: (012) 344-1568 (for attention: dsscomments)


Media Enquiries: 

Joshua Covenant Chigome

Spokesperson for the Minister of Social Development, Minister Sharna Fernandez

Tel: 021 483 9217

Cell: 083 661 4949