Happy Earth Day! Today, many consumers look to buy environmentally friendly products. This green-friendly trend has been noticed by marketers, causing many to claim their products adhere to eco-friendly standards, when some actually fail to do so. This Earth Day, BBB is reminding consumers that the Federal Trade Commission has revised its Green Guides, serving to “Help marketers avoid making environmental claims that are unfair or deceptive.” These Green Guidelines are not necessarily rules or regulations but rather serve to define what the FTC calls deceptive marketing. Some of the points that the guidelines contain are as follows:
- Unqualified general environmental benefit claims should be avoided. This is because they are deemed likely to be difficult to substantiate. Claims like “eco-friendly” and “environmentally safe” are too vague to be meaningful.
- “Free-of” claims regarding a product can only be made if the product contains only trace amounts or less of the specified ingredient. Even then, if the substance was added intentionally then the “free-of” claim can’t be made.
- Unqualified claims of degradability can’t be made unless it can be proven that the entire product or package will completely break down within a year after disposal.
To view more of the Green Guidelines visit, http://cjonline.com/news/2013-04-21/bbb-10-green-guide-tips-earth-day.