The Environment Agency of the UK has launched a project to establish standardised metrics to prevent greenwashing in the food and beverage sector.
Greenwashing is a form of marketing spin in which PR and marketing are deceptively used to persuade the public that an organisation’s products, aims and policies are environment-friendly when they have shortcomings.
Working in partnership with the Institute for Manufacturing at the University of Cambridge, Scottish Environment Protection Agency, Northern Ireland Environment Agency, Waste and Resources Action Program, and the British Standards Institute, the initiative will help businesses present their environmental performance to the public, especially in key areas such as resource efficiency and greenhouse-gas reduction.
In addition, the initiative will incentivise companies who are working towards greener manufacturing practices and business operations to tackle climate change.
“One of the big challenges for food businesses trying to mitigate climate change is how to communicate their environmental performance that goes beyond legal compliance effectively and efficiently,” said Becca Tremain, project lead, Environment Agency
“This project seeks to address this challenge by standardising environmental metrics for food businesses that go beyond legal compliance.”
The project has been made possible by a £195,000 grant from the £3.7 million Regulators’ Pioneer Fund launched by The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).
“Good regulation should spur entrepreneurship, not stand in its way, and this project will help keep the UK at the cutting-edge of innovation,” said Lord Callanan, Business Minister.
The partnership will be working with IEMA, the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment, trade associations and private sector organisations including Sainsbury’s, Nestle, Cranswick, 2 Sisters and Vitacress to understand and ensure the feasibility of the metrics.