Studies have shown that 73% of consumers want detailed environmental performance information readily accessible on product packaging.¹ These same customers aren’t looking for vague statements; they desire clear, comprehensive messaging. The increasing demand for clarity in green claims creates an opportunity to distinguish your brand from the competition. Many companies are making claims about the sustainable attributes of their products, but cannot substantiate these statements. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has released its 2012 Green Guides, and companies making invalid claims may be subject to punitive action. To ensure FTC compliance, GreenCircle will conduct a detailed, science-based evaluation of products and manufacturing operations to verify claims and provide certifications for:
- Products that provide energy savings compared to similar products are highly sought after as utility rates increase and consumers continue to focus on energy reduction. Third-party certification of energy savings provides a powerful communication tool that instills consumer confidence in your energy savings claims.
- Closed loop products have been designed utilizing life cycle thinking and intelligent environmental considerations for recycling at the end of life, typically into the same or equal quality product.
- GreenCircle will verify and certify claims that life cycle impacts of products were reduced as a result of implemented changes to the product based on previous LCA data.
- Recyclable products can be diverted from the waste stream through available processes and programs and can be collected, processed and returned to use in the form of raw materials or products at the end of life. Certifying your products for recyclable material demonstrates a commitment to industrial ecology and the overall life cycle impacts of your products.
- Recycled content is comprised of pre-consumer and/or post-consumer material that is used as a raw material in the manufacturing of products.
- A renewable/biobased resource can be defined as a commercial or industrial product (other than food or feed) that is composed of biological products, including renewable domestic agricultural materials and forestry materials.
- Rapidly renewable resources are agricultural products, derived from both plant and animal sources, that take ten years or less to harvest.
Benefits of Product Certifications
- Green Marketing: 56% of consumers don’t believe that the companies they purchase from will tell the truth about their green products.¹ Third-party validation creates a level of consumer trust that has been lacking in the green marketplace.
- Customer Retention: 77% of consumers said they would stop buying a company’s products if they felt misled by an environmental claim.¹ Today’s educated consumers have become much more selective, and third-party certification can be vital in attracting and retaining customers.
- Credibility: 51% of consumers are likely to buy a product with a certification over similar products that only have environmental claims or imagery.² GreenCircle is an internationally recognized third-party certification body. Our rigorous evaluation process provides trusted transparency and a recognizable mark that ensures a product’s sustainability claims are valid.
- Federal Trade Commission: The FTC has released its updated 2012 Green Guides to prevent unfair or deceptive environmental claims in the marketplace. The Green Guides have established stricter requirements and enforcement guidelines for environmental product claims. GreenCircle certification is consistent with the Green Guides and certifies to FTC standards.
- Green Construction Codes: Current green construction codes, such as the International Green Construction Code (IgCC) and the California Green Construction Code (CALGreen), are requiring builders to use products with recycled content and, in the case of IgCC, that are recyclable. GreenCircle Certification can be used as documentation and proof of the recycled content/recyclable content claims of your products to be used in buildings being built to these green building codes.
- LEED Green Building Rating Systems: Products that achieve GreenCircle certification will demonstrate conformance with the Materials and Resources criteria for recycled content and rapidly renewable material for building products, as specified in the USGBC Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating Systems. GreenCircle certification is conducted on a per plant, per product basis in compliance with the USGBC’s LEED Interpretation Ruling regarding recycled content claims. GreenCircle certification is fully recognized by the USGBC and our certifications can be used as documentation within LEED submittals.
- National Green Building Standard (NGBS Green) Certification: A product certified for recycled content and/or bio-based material by GreenCircle qualifies for review and certification as an NGBS Green Certified Product under both the 2008 and 2012 versions of the National Green Building Standard. Third-party certification is required in order to get your products listed as NGBS Green Certified by Home Innovation Research Labs for recycled content and bio-based material.
- Sustainable Supply Chain: Products with independent third-party certification fulfill certain customer’s Sustainable Supply Chain requirements and can secure your role in today’s global supply chain.
- 2012 Cone GreenGap Trend Tracker
- 2011 Cone GreenGap Trend Tracker
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