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Avoid greenwashing this Earth Day and beyond

April 20, 2010
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WASHINGTON — As more manufacturers offer "green" alternatives, so, too, do the number of companies practicing "greenwashing" techniques to mislead consumers, according to USA Today.
To keep the less honest companies at bay, several third-party organizations like the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute, Green Seal Inc. and the Forest Stewardship Council have been formed to verify a product''s sustainable claims, the story stated.
NSF International, a non-profit group that certifies products and writes standards for sustainability, has the following tips to share to aid in your avoidance of greenwashing: Look for meaningful claims and be weary of phrases like "all-natural" and "environmentally friendly," avoid products that make irrelevant claims, look for a seal or certification mark from a recognized, independent third-party specializing in green claims and check out the product''s packaging to see if ti is biodegradable, the story noted.
Other tips from NSF International include things such as not being mislead by pretty pictures or Earth-tone colors, carefully reading ingredient listings and instructions, questioning percentage claims and being cautious of hidden trade-offs, the story added.
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