Have you ever wondered why so many top apparel brands feature Gore-Tex, but not other popular performance fabrics such as Polartec, OutDry or eVent? Apparently, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is asking that question themselves. According to TransWorld Business, the FTC is investigating W.L. Gore for anti-trust violations and unfair competitive practices in regards to its Gore-Tex fabric.

At the root of the investigation is whether Gore would only license Gore-Tex to apparel manufacturers who signed contracts or made agreements not to use competing fabrics. OutDry Technologies, which was purchased by Columbia in 2010, filed a complaint with the Commission of the European Union that led to the investigation.

“Columbia and OutDry Technologies have long been concerned that W. L. Gore & Associates’ commercial practices systematically prevent consumers, brand owners and manufacturers from gaining access to competing product innovations in waterproof breathable footwear and gloves,” Peter Bragdon, Columbia’s senior vice president of Legal and Corporate Affairs said in a press release.

Click here for the full TransWorld report.