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Avoiding eco-seals

Coming up with international eco-labeling standards that don't impede U.S. packagers is important, according to Karil Kochenderfer, director of environmental affairs for the Grocery Manufacturers of America (GMA), testifying before Congress in late February.
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FILED IN:  Sustainability  > Strategy
     

Specifically some eco-labels especially "eco-seals" offer misleading and incomplete information and could serve as a barrier to U.S. trade she argued. Eco-seals which are awarded by centralized certification panels have become popular overseas particularly in Europe. But said Kochenderfer the criteria used to award eco-seals are subjective not scientific and can be barriers to innovation. In some cases they are discriminatory and protectionist becoming a barrier to trade she noted. She also said they fail to educate consumers about the environmental attributes or trade-offs associated with a specific product. Kochenderfer was testifying on behalf of the 1-member multi-industry Coalition for Truth in Environmental Marketing which favors a system modeled on the Federal Trade Commission's environmental labeling guidelines.

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