Sustainability Certifications – What Are They And How Do They Differ From Each Other?
More and more companies are realising the need to behave more sustainably. One way of demonstrating your honest concern for ecology are various sustainability certifications. Why have they even come into being, what are the criteria for obtaining them and which ones are reliable?
How Were They Born?
In the beginning of every initiative there is demand. In this case, the demand came from both the customers who began to take ecology into consideration much more when buying their products as well as from the companies who began to realise their share of responsibility for our environment.
The establishment of sustainability certifications was therefore a logical result of the demand from the customers, companies and various NGOs to come up with a standardised way to set apart companies that care about our environment from those that do not. Since this is an international topic which by its nature can't be solved by interventions from local governments and a solution on the international field might have taken too long to materialise, sustainability certifications came into life.
What Types of Certifications Are There?
Just in the HORECA sector there are dozens of certifications awarded to eco-friendly businesses. Probably the best known of such initiatives in Slovakia is the Green Management programme connecting activities of hotels in the field of environment protection. Each hotel in the programme subscribes to following the so-called Charter of Environment which it then puts into practice in the whole operation – by reducing energy usage, separating trash and so on.
There are also other global certifications which deserve the attention of your business. One of such is the Green Key certification awarded to businesses all around the world, currently held by hotels in 65 different countries of the world. A similarly global reputation comes with the Nordic Ecolabel – a certification with its origins in the north of Europe which gradually spread throughout the world.
Every certification should follow a list of criteria. It should be independent, the conditions needed to obtain it should be public and verifiable and it should also not come under too much regulation from the government(s).
SHP Group products are awarded with several certifications which follow the majority of the parameters described earlier plus a variety of others. Among them is the prestigious EU Ecolabel awarded since 1992 to products and services meeting high environmental standards throughout their life-cycle, the CPNP certification rewarding safety of cosmetic products and Blauer Engel, Germany’s oldest eco-label for products whose production process is environmentally friendly. You can check the full list of our certifications here.