Environmental product declarations

Environmental Product Declarations exist in some OECD countries to help inform consumers about potential environmental or health impacts of a product.

Policy in practice

› Regions: Europe, Asia

› Countries: Sweden, Italy, Korea, Republic of, Japan

› Tags: Plastic, Labels, Certificates, Information systems

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Environmental Product Declarations (EPD) (ISO type III labels) provide information about product composition and content and intend to enable the consumer to assess any potential environmental or health impacts of the product. EPD programmes are still rarely applied in practice, although some schemes exist in OECD member countries, including at national level in Sweden, Italy, South Korea and Japan.

For example, labelling recycled content of plastics products could differentiate and drive the demand for secondary plastic materials and improve the overall competitiveness of secondary plastics materials. SCS Global Services, a certification body, developed a voluntary recycled content certificate, which is applicable for different materials, including plastics.

Source report

Watkins, E., et al. (2019), "Policy approaches to incentivise sustainable plastic design", OECD Environment Working Papers, No. 149, OECD Publishing, Paris.

Key policy message

Environmental Product Declarations can help consumers make informed choices about the environmental or health impacts of their purchases, helping to drive demand for more sustainable products.