World Ecolabel Day: Into the future with credible labels

On the occasion of World Ecolabel Day on 12 October 2023, which celebrates quality labels worldwide, the Austrian Ecolabel hosted a seminar in Brussels. During a seminar, EU parliamentarians and their assistants were informed about the credibility of governmental quality labels - and pointed out future challenges. The seminar is part of a series of events - after the seminar in Brussels, there will be a fair at the European Parliament in Strasbourg to illustrate the variety of certified products for EU parliamentarians.

Strong together

The event, which was attended by about 35 people from around the EU institutions, was the result of a fruitful cooperation between the state ecolabels from Austria (Austrian Ecolabel), Germany (Blue Angel), Scandinavia (Nordic Swan) and the Netherlands (Milieukeur).

The aim of the event was to highlight the central role of credible, state-owned quality labels in the transformation towards sustainability to representatives of the EU Parliament and the EU Commission. The Austrian Ecolabel is working hard to ensure that the additional requirements and administrative burdens for Ecolabel licensees are kept as low as possible - after all, the award of the Austrian Ecolabel is supposed to be proof of environmental excellence.

Strengthening credible labels

The above-mentioned quality labels emphasised that they have been working on credible sustainability certifications for more than 30 years - and together they have awarded around 160,000 products from 16,000 companies. The importance of credible quality labels in sustainable procurement was also discussed. The European consumer association BEUC pointed out the importance of credible labels for the orientation of consumers and the dangers of greenwashing.

Input from the European Commission on the topic of future regulatory requirements - such as in the context of the Green Claims Directive - rounded off the programme and led to a lively discussion as well as a constructive exchange - after all, there are definitely challenges here for state quality labels such as the Austrian Ecolabel.