Cradle to Cradle®
Standards, Certifications & Labels
Cradle to Cradle® is a multi-attribute third party certification program that evaluates a product through five quality categories — material health, material reutilization, renewable energy and carbon management, water stewardship, and social fairness. A product receives an achievement level in each category with the lowest achievement level representing the product’s overall grade. The program is designed to encourage continuous improvement in product design.
Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute
Raw materials, manufacturing, transportation, consumer use, end of life
The Cradle to Cradle® certification program includes requirements for:
There are five levels of product certification: Basic, Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. The minimum level of achievement in any of the categories determines the product’s overall certification level.
Products or materials from any industry that are sold to consumers or other businesses are eligible for certification. Certification criteria are the same for all product types.
Every manufacturer receiving the certification mark for their product is required to make a good faith effort toward continuous improvement and optimization.
Manufacturers can also apply to receive a product Material Health Certificate. The requirements that must be met in order to achieve a Material Health Certificate are identical to the requirements at each level of the Material Health section of the Cradle to Cradle Certified™ Product Standard, in addition to the Continuous Improvement/Optimization requirement. There are four levels of Material Health Certification – Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum.
Companies seeking certification must list product ingredients above 0.01% concentration, along with related MSDS's, test results, etc.. Products cannot contain any chemicals on the C2C Banned List. All products must be able to be disassembled and recycled. Data about the manufacturing process (including energy use, water use, and social responsibility practices) is also required. There are additional requirements with each level of certification.
The C2C certification requires annual surveillance to confirm that products continue to meet the standard’s requirements, including continual improvement. The product must be re-certified every two years.
Fees for product certification can be found on the Cradle2 Cradle web site: www.c2ccertified.org/resources/collection-page/cradle-to-cradle-certified-resources
Certification is valid for one calendar year from the certification date and must be renewed on an annual basis.
Strengths: Supply chain is evaluated. Criteria used are all publicly available and are periodically reviewed in a multi-stakeholder process.
Weaknesses: Cradle to Cradle® certification is not really a certification at the lower levels, but is more of a review process.
Green Seal, EcoLogo, EPA Design for Environment Safer Product Labeling Program
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