Greenwashing is misleading or giving false information to consumers or investors about the negative environmental impact of a company’s products and operations. It’s a form of false advertising.
This blog aims to alert consumers who want to be sustainability responsible and prevent being duped by false claims. If you are paying extra for something, make sure the claims are legitimate.
I was greenwashed in 2021 by Home Depot. They claimed by 2018, they would have completed phasing-out of neonicotinoids (neonics) in their plants. Yet in 2021, they were still selling plants with neonics (which I regret purchasing). The state of California is partly to blame because they have not, like some other states, banned neonics.
Another company that Greenwashes is Ikea. Their plastic packaging, illegal logging, over dependence on particle board use, and the disposable quality of their furniture need to be improved.
The little triangle with the number in the center imprinted on plastic products (e.g. ♶) is greenwashing. Currently, 95% of all single-use plastic ends up in landfills and oceans. The plastics industry uses these tricks to make consumers feel better about buying plastic.
Other examples of Greenwashing companies are: Volkswagen, BP, Nestlé, Coca-Cola, Starbucks, Major Banks, Major Airlines, H&M;
The fishing Industry false claims of sustainability. According to Netflix documentary, Seaspiracy, the sustainability certifications used by the fishing industry are a farce.
Check out this comprehensive list of Greenwashing companies from Truth in Advertising.
On a positive note, five brands that are not Greenwashing: Patagonia, Ben and Anna, Lucy and Yak, Dr Bonner’s, Pela Case, Fjall Raven.
This list will grow with increased consumer demand, education, and legislation.
Knowledge is power.