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Mobile Apps Cutting Through Eco-Label Clutter

Mobile Apps Cutting Through Eco-Label Clutter

There are more than 300 eco-labels used on products today, certifying benchmarks for sustainability, fair trade and other environmental concerns. An app called GoodGuide allows shoppers to scan product barcodes to get an overall “green” score for any product.

Click through to find out how this is affecting the makers of eco-labeled products.

Consumers are experiencing green fatigue when it comes to the multitude of products that claim to be good for the environment. A fair trade or Eco-friendly seal isn’t enough to motivate a purchase anymore, especially when every product on the shelf is making some kind of environmental claim.

There are notable exceptions to this trend. Some Eco-Labels such as EnergyStar have won the endorsements of state and local governments, giving them more clout in the eyes of consumers.

But as far as consumer products such as packaged food and household cleaners, the field is still cluttered. GoodGuide is a mobile app that allows shoppers to cut through this clutter; photographing a product’s barcode provides instant access to an overall “green” score.

Much like NuVal, the GoodGuide score aggregates most of the concerns of an Eco-concious consumer. The three major factors affecting the score are:

  • Performance: what is the carbon impact of the product? Have there been any recalls or controversies related to the product?
  • Policy: does the company producing the product have any environmental goals/policies in place?
  • Product: the environmental impact of the product’s ingredients and packaging

In some cases, products labeled organic or eco-friendly are actually worse for the environment than their “traditional” counterparts. The emergence of technologies like GoodGuide make it more important than ever that companies research and back up the claims on their labels.

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