EU Ecolabel for Furniture- Report from 1st Ad Hoc Working Group Meeting

Published on : Monday, November 18, 2013

logo-firaThe 1st Ad Hoc Working Group (AHWG) Meeting for the Revision of the EU Ecolabel and Green Public Procurement Criteria for Furniture was held in Seville on 7th October 2013. Attended by over 30 delegates representing various manufacturers, research associations, trade federations and Ecolabel competent bodies, the meeting provided the first opportunity for stakeholders to discuss the proposed amendments to the Ecolabel criteria.


Key points from the meeting were as follows:


• There was general agreement between stakeholders concerning extending the product scope to incorporate all types of furniture. Correspondingly, criteria would be set for other materials.

• There were objections to setting thresholds for certain criteria and treating all with a uniform approach. Instead stakeholders agreed that criteria should be material specific and reflect environmental impact.

• Stakeholders were in agreement on a horizontal approach towards hazardous substances and alignment with other environmental standards. The JRC also confirmed that they would not exclude whole groups of substances unless underpinned by scientific and technical evidence.

• Contention remains over setting percentage of wood based materials. Although, stakeholders accepted that 100% of wood materials should be sustainably sourced.
• It is proposed for products comprised of >10% plastics that at least 50% (by weight) of this plastic must be recycled materials.

• It is proposed for products comprised of >50% metals that at least 50% (by weight) of this metal must be recycled if steel or aluminium, or 20% if other metal.

• Stakeholders were very keen for the Ecolabel to be heavily promoted in the GPP as many procurers for public contracts were not sufficiently aware of the standard and should be using it to make informed buying decisions.



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