Eco-vouchers encourage sustainable consumption, including second-hand and refurbished goods
Eco-vouchers were introduced in Belgium by the social partners through collective agreement. Eco-vouchers can only be used to purchase, in Belgium, environmentally-friendly goods and services included in an exhaustive list annexed to that agreement. That list contains 4 categories:
- Ecological Goods & Services
- Sustainable Mobility & Leisure
- Re-use, recycling, repair and waste prevention
- Short-circuit products (local agriculture and short food supply chains)
The eco-vouchers can also be used for purchasing re-used, recycled products or products made from recycled or biodegradable materials, second-hand products or repaired goods, rechargeable batteries or eco-friendly lamps. Maintenance and repairing costs can also be paid with eco-vouchers.
Every two years, the list of eligible products is evaluated to keep up with ecological developments. Eco-vouchers are issued by Belgian firms through a voucher issuer (represented by Vouchers Issuers Association). Currently, approximately 1.8 million employees receive eco-vouchers and as of 1 January 2024, eco-vouchers will be distributed in electronic form only.
Communication actions are regularly organised and a dedicated website has been launched.