Programmes are voluntary schemes that aim to help consumers identify products and services that are environmentally friendly. These programmes provide a set of criteria that products and services must meet in order to be eligible for ecolabels, which is a logo or symbol that is displayed on the product or packaging.

Standards for ecolabelling are specific criteria that products and services must meet in order to qualify for ecolabel.  These standards are developed by organisations such as the International Organization of Standardization (ISO) and us the Global Ecolabelling Network (GEN) as we work with stakeholders in the industry, governments, NGOs and consumers to create credible criteria for ecolabelling.

ISO14024 Standards

Global Ecolabelling Network follows the International Organization for Standard for type 1 ecolabels. The standard of ISO14024: 2018 recognises the compliance of type 1 environmental labels in regard to their principles and procedures. Once an organisation proves they are compliant with the standards then they are certificated for the label.

The international Organisation for Standards also focuses on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals to which is a plan to eradicate some of the world’s most troubling issues and concerns. ISO14024 contributes to three out of twelve goals which are goal 12 – responsible consumption and production, goal 13 -Climate Change, goal 14 – life below water and goal 15 – life on land.

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Common Core Criteria


Ecolabelling has increasingly grown through the market as it promotes the prevention of pollution and importance of sustainability. Programmes from different locations have separate environmental priorities. Thus in order to escalate sustainable products worldwide and prevent potential trade barriers mutual recognition programmes and common core criteria are created. GEN is leading this change with the formulated steps to follow in order to develop common core criteria.

  1. Gather product information, technical characteristics and check global development trends to formulate an initial research report. This creates a life cycle analysis and compares existing global criteria.
  2. Sub-product categories are then scoped for inclusion (for example, divide washing machines into categories of commercial and residential.)
  3. Elements of existing criteria are separated into “core” and “non-core” portions. (For example, power consumption is the core element of criteria for televisions.)
  4. Detailed specifications/requirements are listed for each core element. (For example, identify power consumption specifications at TV’s “ON Mode”, “STANDBY Mode”, and “OFF Mode”.)
  5. Testing and verification methods are set for each specification. (For example, decide how to verify mixing ratios of recycled materials.)
  6. Common Core Criteria are agreed, and an action plan proposed. Members are encouraged to adopt the criteria as national standards and to sign mutual member recognition agreements.

GEN is the leading network of the world’s most credible and robust ecolabels

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