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New Code: CMA launches Green Claims Code to stop misleading ‘green’ claims by businesses, irrespective of size or sector

Author: Atom Content Marketing

Published: 01 Nov 2021

Businesses of all sizes in all sectors, and whether selling to consumers or to other businesses, should review any claims they make about their environmental credentials or risk falling foul of a new Green Claims Code from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

The Code is part of a new CMA campaign against businesses that make misleading and ambiguous ‘green’ claims, either online or offline – for example, on in-store advertising, displays or packaging.

It will be actively enforced from early 2022 when the CMA will start reviewing green claims made by businesses. All sectors will be targeted, although the CMA is expected to focus first on sectors where green claims are most commonly made. The GOV.UK website specifically mentions ‘textiles and fashion, travel and transport, and fast-moving consumer goods (food and beverages, beauty products and cleaning products)’.

The Code contains six principles – including that green claims must be accurate and truthful and should not omit important information that could prevent a customer making an informed choice about a product’s green credentials. Another principle covers comparisons between a business’s products and those of a rival. Businesses are also required to produce robust, credible and current evidence to back up green claims they may make.

Particularly, businesses must take into account the full product life-cycle when making green claims.

Failure to comply with the Code could result in the CMA taking legal action under existing consumer protection laws.

Operative date

  • Early 2022


  • All businesses should:
    • Check out the Green Claims Code on the gov.uk website.
    • Review any green claims they make about their products and services before 2022, to make sure they can show compliance with the Code if investigated by the CMA.

This article from Atom Content Marketing is for general guidance only, for businesses in the United Kingdom governed by the laws of England. Atom Content Marketing, expert contributors and ICAEW (as distributor) disclaim all liability for any errors or omissions.

Copyright © Atom Content Marketing

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