With no internationally agreed upon standards for providing sustainability information to consumers, businesses struggle to create sound claims, while the public suffers from information overload and mistrust of corporate greenwashing. The Consumer Information Programme is a global platform that works to get consumers reliable, easily understandable information on the sustainability of products and services they buy.
Through educating the public, helping businesses get the tools to measure their impact, and championing public policies, they focus three objectives: improving access to consumer information, driving change in government and business and changing behaviors across all parts of society.
The Guidelines for Providing Product Sustainability Information provide guidance and examples so that companies of all sizes and in all regions can present effective, trustworthy sustainability claims to consumers. More than 140 stakeholders collaborated on the report, which targets companies, public and private organizations that regulate product sustainability information schemes, and ‘watchdog’ groups that check the quality of existing claims.
The Guidelines’ structure has two objectives: to establish minimum requirements that must be met when providing product sustainability information to consumers (fundamental principles); and to encourage ambition, improvement and sustainability leadership over time (aspirational principles).
“The Guidelines have offered us a clear learning on how to communicate the sustainability attributes of our products to consumers, and the exercise was a turning point for a deep reflection on such communication.”
– Auchan Retail España