The Soil Association has launched a campaign that calls out to the beauty industry to clean up greenwashing.
The Campaign for Clarity hits back at products that are organic in name only, saying that brands should back up any organic claims with independent certification.
We are of course very much behind this campaign – for over a decade we’ve been ardent supporters of, and lobbied for, better regulation for organic skin care: The laws that make organic certification mandatory for organic food, do not apply to skin care or textiles.
ASA and Trading Standards laws do exist to prevent the falsest of claims, but with little time to police these issues, it is left to the consumer to bring organic fakes to the attention of the authorities. And most consumers are just not aware of the issue, so the toiletry brands that make misleading organic claims rarely get brought to account.
Today, British beauty aisles are rife with products labelled organic that are made with a tiny proportion of organic ingredients. Either that or they contain chemicals that would not pass organic certification. Go to France though and it’s different – the French government have introduced their own national laws to protect consumers shopping for organic beauty products. The labelling requirements there are almost as stringent as for organic food.
Launching the Campaign at the Allergy & FreeFrom Show in London on Saturday, Soil Association Policy Director Peter Melchett referred to a dire state of affairs that rips off the UK public. He also referenced an article Abi published in the Huffington Post recently which explained that greenwashing was particularly prevalent among shampoo products (no pun intended).
The Campaign for Clarity will be the focus of Organic Beauty Week (14th – 20th September). More information can be found on the Soil Association’s website.