Is your company guilty of greenwashing? Here's how to tell:
Updated: Oct 16, 2020
Consumers are tired of companies greenwashing their products. What’s worse than finding out that your favorite product(s) are harmful to the environment? Finding out that the company knew and lied to you about it.
Greenwashing is the misleading act of marketing a product or service as good or better for the environment when in fact, it’s really not.
Is your company guilty of greenwashing? Here’s how to tell:
1. You don’t tell your customers how to dispose of your product properly.
Are you informing your consumers about how to dispose of your product properly at the end of its life? If not, you’re missing out on a key piece of information that your customers need in order to be responsible consumers. Is your product recyclable or compostable in the real world or just in theory?
2. You label your product as eco-friendly with no explanation of how.
Greenwashing has been around for a while now, but companies are still slapping the “eco-friendly” label on with zero explanation of how their products impact the environment. Any product that is not made of organic/recycled materials or reusable is most likely not eco-friendly. Customers need proof of how your product is eco-friendly or they will see through the marketing scheme.
3. Your packaging isn’t recyclable, compostable, or reusable.
As a consumer, few things are more frustrating than buying an item specifically to reduce plastic waste only to have it come in plastic packaging. The best examples of this are bamboo toothbrushes in plastic packaging or water that comes in non-recyclable Tetra Paks (cartons). How are you packaging your products? Is your packaging recyclable in the real world or just in theory?
4. Your products rely on non-renewable resources or unfair labor practices.
How is your product being manufactured? Who is making your product or providing your services? It’s important to remember that humans are also a part of the Earth equation when talking about sustainability. We must not only take care of our environment, but the people that inhabit it as well. If you have an “eco-friendly” product but rely on slave labor, you’re still hurting our environment.
Need help avoiding greenwashing? Sign up for our Zero Waste Kickstart course to learn how to communicate what material(s) your product is made of and how to dispose of it properly to consumers.
Want us to do the work for you as part of our end of life product transparency services? Sign up for a discovery call with us today to put an end to greenwashing.