14 Jan Ecological or eco-designed?
At a time when 8 out of 10 people in France state they are conscious or very conscious of environmental issues, where 34% of them declare they choose eco-responsible products*, many companies are implementing a responsible approach and asking their sales department to focus on ecological or eco-designed options. But what is the difference between these two terms?
The 100% ecological product does not exist! Most products are manufactured using raw materials. The products must be packaged, then transported to their final destination. And they eventually become, sooner or later, waste that needs a particular process to be destroyed or recycled – a process which in itself uses energy. For example, are bamboo objects really 100% eco-friendly? Although some people consider bamboo to be a ‘magical’ plant in environmental protection, bamboo needs water to grow; manufacturing objects is an industrial process and the products are often transported from Asia or Africa to western countries…
It is therefore better to devise a product that will have the least negative impact on the environment throughout its life cycle, this is an eco-designed product or eco-friendly product.
WHAT CRITERIA ARE INVOLVED IN DEFINING A PRODUCT AS ECO-FRIENDLY?
- Using the lowest amount of renewable and locally accessible raw materials
- Environmentally friendly and energy-saving manufacturing processes
- Local manufacture to reduce the carbon footprint
- Usefulness and sustainability
- Optimised packaging
- Biodegradability or recyclability within a circular economy
- An ethical work environment
*(ADEME survey – French people and the Environment)
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