4 April 2022
The European Commission presented a much-anticipated package of European Green Deal proposals on March 30. Its aim is to “make sustainable products the norm” in the European Union, to boost circular business models and “empower consumers for the green transition”, reports Leatherbiz. . These proposals aim to put in place new rules to make “almost all physical goods in the EU market” more friendly to the environment, more circular and energy-efficient throughout their entire lifecycle, from the design phase to daily use, repurposing and end-of-life. They insist that consumers be better informed about the environmental sustainability of products and better protected against greenwashing. For example, new EU rules will come into force to ensure that consumers receive information at the point of sale outlining “a commercial guarantee of durability”, as well as information relevant to repair. The March 30 package suggests manufacturers, brands and retailers will be encouraged to publish “a reparability score” for the products they sell. Longevity and repairability are two of the characteristics that make leather an ideal fit with any and all discussions about the circular economy. Environmental claims, such as ‘green’, ‘eco-friendly‘, ‘good for the environment’, will be allowed “only if underpinned by recognised excellence in environmental performance”, the document says. Voluntary sustainability labels covering environmental or social aspects will have to have third-party verification or be established by public authorities.

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