“Retailers and wholesalers agree that consumers need to be assured that environmental claims are properly verified and that they should, equally, be protected from misleading claims. We, therefore, support efforts to address “greenwashing” to protect consumers and to ensure fair competition. Our sector is committed to the transition towards a Circular Economy, and we are already offering an expanding range of sustainable products. We want environmental claims to be transparent and verifiable, which requires clear rules. For these rules to function in the Single Market, creating a full harmonisation and a level playing field will be extremely important, and this would have been best achieved through a Regulation rather than a Directive.”
Retailers and wholesalers are working with suppliers to offer more sustainable products, as well as redesigning their own-brand products and their packaging to ensure more recyclability, launching new business models such as repair and re-use of furniture, or enabling renting of electronic devices. However, to maximise the benefits of these initiatives, clear rules are needed which enable communication with consumers, avoid imposing unintended barriers and facilitate efforts to offer consumers the products and services they need.
While EuroCommerce supports the objective of the draft Directive, it believes that a regulation would have helped achieve greater harmonisation. The association will look for more clarity on how this legislation will be reconciled with pre-existing national and EU labels, already covering green claims.
Ensure policy coherence
EuroCommerce appreciates the Commission’s initiative to avoid duplication of sustainability labelling for food products, announced under the Farm-to-Fork Strategy, which will be adequately established there. Alignment and coherence with the initiatives under the Farm-to-Fork Strategy is needed to provide the whole supply chain with clarity. Similarly, the new rules on green claims need to be consistent and fully aligned with other initiatives such as the proposal for Empowering Consumers for the Green Transition and the EU Right to Repair initiative, stressed the association.