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    Zalando no longer calls clothing “sustainable”


    EU criticizes “misleading” seals
    Zalando no longer calls clothing “sustainable”

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    Many consumers want to shop more sustainably, which is why they pay attention to appropriate seals. But they are often misleading. That's why mail order company Zalando is removing them from its website. Instead, more transparency should ensure clarity.

    Under pressure from Brussels, the online mail order company Zalando is deleting “misleading” sustainability seals from its website, according to the EU Commission. Zalando has committed to no longer using the “sustainable” label in its online shop from April 15, the commission said. The seal could mislead consumers because there are no clear sustainability criteria behind it.

    Zalando's products will no longer be labeled with green symbols such as leaves or trees. Anyone who shops at Zalando should no longer be able to search for “sustainable” products using the filter. Instead, the online retailer should provide more precise information, such as the proportion of recycled material in a piece of clothing. Many consumers want to shop more sustainably, explained EU Justice Commissioner Didier Reynders. “We must take action against providers who may seek to profit from consumers' good intentions,” he added. It is important that “a market leader like Zalando” now gives in.

    Online retailers encounter EU rules

    The Berlin group welcomed the agreement with the EU Commission. In the future, Zalando will “provide even more specific and clear information about product benefits,” the company said. The EU Commission must “endeavour to apply the rules coherently across all providers” and create a level playing field for companies.

    Online retailers in the EU must adhere to rules that prohibit unfair business practices. Among other things, they are intended to ensure that consumers are not misled. National authorities are responsible for monitoring in cooperation with the EU Commission. In January, the European Parliament also passed a new law that bans greenwashing in advertising. General claims such as “environmentally friendly”, “climate neutral” and “biodegradable” may no longer be printed on products without reliable evidence.

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