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Tackling Misleading Claims and Empowering Consumers in the Textiles Sector

The online event on transparency, co-hosted by the Policy Hub and Delara Burkhardt MEP, will take place on 14 September from 11 a.m. to 12.30 p.m. CEST.

As part of the Circular Economy Action Plan, the European Commission is developing two key policies on transparency: the Substantiating Green Claims Initiative and the Empowering Consumers Initiative, which will require companies to substantiate claims they make about the environmental footprint of their products/services and will help consumers to play their role in a green transition.

In light of this, the Policy Hub plans to organise a webinar co-hosted with Delara Burkhardt, Member of the European Parliament, to discuss what is needed for an effective policy framework on transparency. At the same time, the event will mark the launch of the Policy Hub’s position paper on transparency which discusses key recommendations from the apparel and footwear industry.

Transparency plays an important role in leveraging sustainability and reaching the ambitions of the EU Green Deal as it stimulates sustainable purchasing choices. This is particularly important in a circular economy, where consumers play a crucial role not only through their purchasing decisions but also because of their role in repairing, recycling or reusing a product. To make sustainable choices, they must have access to reliable, comparable and verifiable information.

However, this is still a challenge due to the proliferation of environmental labels and claims, which confuses consumers and may lead to misleading information. To ensure that consumers obtain reliable and useful information, businesses must substantiate claims they make about their product’s environmental footprint. This would not only empower consumers to make sustainable purchasing choices but also help companies and investors make more sustainable decisions. The forthcoming Substantiating Green Claims and Empowering Consumers initiatives aim to address these challenges.

During the event, policymakers and representatives from industry and civil society will engage in an open dialogue on some of the remaining challenges surrounding transparency and the solutions necessary to stimulate sustainable customer behaviour, while also driving operational change within businesses. The objectives of the event are as follows:

  • To discuss what an effective policy framework on transparency should entail and how to leverage its potential
  • To provide a platform for exchange between stakeholders and hear their needs when it comes to transparency
  • To launch the Policy Hub’s position paper on transparency and present the apparel and footwear industry’s recommendations.

Agenda

  • Welcome & keynote speech from Delara Burkhardt MEP
  • Presentation of current transparency policies by the EU Commission (DG ENV)
  • Presentation of the transparency position paper by Baptiste Carriere-Pradal, Chair of the Policy Hub
  • Panel discussion with Paola Migliorini, Deputy Head of Unit, Sustainable Production, Products and Consumption, DG Environment, European Commission • Beth Greenaway, Business Development Lead, Sustainable Choices, Zalando • Sarah Ditty, Global Policy Director, Fashion Revolution • Catherine Louies, Head of Transparency and Circular Innovation, C&A Global Facilitated
  • Q&A
  • Concluding remarks