No more smokescreens

about meaningless advertising promises

It is quite possible that promotional promises such as "environmentally friendly" or "climate neutral" will soon no longer be allowed to be used. In any case, they are meaningless. The EU now wants to take action.

"Eco", "climate neutral", "environmentally friendly", "plastic-free" or "organic" - what do all these terms have in common? Firstly, they can be found on a wide range of packaging and products today. Because, secondly, they are either unprotected (anyone can use them somehow), completely meaningless (no company or living being is climate neutral) or both. According to an EU study, almost half of all statements about the environmental friendliness of products made by companies in the EU are misleading, unfounded or simply false. The EU Commission wants to make the use of such nebulous claims much more difficult in the future.

"Behaviour or activities that give the impression that a company is doing more to protect the environment than is actually the case are called #greenwashing," writes Dr Christian Mani, Circular Economy expert at Evonik.

»This is simply cheating the environment and also us consumers.«

Behind these claims is usually a desperate attempt by companies or brands to build up a green façade without initiating real changes in terms of environmental protection.

Now the EU Commission wants to fight such greenwashing harder and punish unfounded environmental claims with sanctions. The draft law is to be presented in March 2023.

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Harald Willenbrock

Head of Concept & Content