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UL’s new ‘EcoLogo’ a tool for transformation

Underwriters Laboratories’ UL Environment division introduced an updated version of its EcoLogo to designate the sustainability of toys.

The EcoLogo is the first environmental toy standard developed with input from the Toy Industry Association (TIA), according to UL. It establishes a points-based model for the evaluation of performance, and recognizes manufacturers for sustainability leadership and innovation with the addition of a Platinum level certification for the highest achievement.

"The EcoLogo Certification mark from UL Environment is more than an ecolabel, it is a tool for market transformation," said Sara Greenstein , president of UL Environment. "This certification empowers manufacturers to more fully understand, measure, and credibly communicate the environmental performance of their products, and it empowers consumers to easily identify toys that are healthier for their children today and healthier for the environment that their children will inherit tomorrow."      

Developed with input from the Toy Industry Association last fall, the voluntary Standard for Sustainability for Toys covers toys designed for children under 14 that are made from wood, plastic, rubber, textiles, metal and bio-based materials. Toys recognized by the standard range from balls to action figures and dolls. The standard offers toy manufacturers specific criteria regarding the use of chemicals, recycled and recyclable materials, sustainably sourced materials, energy usage and pollution minimization associated with the production, use, and disposal of toy products and their packaging. Products that achieve certification to this standard will earn the right to carry UL Environment's EcoLogo certification mark.                                

"TIA’s members are businesses and manufacturers that bring toys of all types to children and many are incorporating environmental and sustainability innovations into these products. Our participation in the revision of UL Environment's Toys Standard helped the UL standards committee to find ways to recognize sustainability achievements that vary from manufacturer to manufacturer," said Al Kaufman , TIA SVP of technical affairs.

The standard's new points-based system establishes baseline requirements and awards points for sustainability leadership indicators in six key areas including, health and environment, materials, energy, prroduct stewardship, manufacturing and operations and supply chain.

A points-based model was chosen to help recognize the many avenues in which environmental leadership performance is demonstrated, while ensuring the achievement of a leadership level for cumulative overall performance, according to TIA.

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