MBDC, a global consultancy helping clients create a positive footprint on the planet by implementing the Cradle to Cradle framework, today announced a series of 2009 milestones. These achievements point to industry's deepening commitment to re-think and re-design products and processes for human health, environmental health and recyclability.
In 2009, MBDC certified more than 100 products, bringing the total number of products certified to more 300 since the program launched in late 2005. Since 2005, the firm has seen steady growth in certifications, with a total of 200 products certified in the past two years. In 2009, 14 products achieved Gold-level certification, Cradle to Cradle's second highest level of achievement, more than in any other year. At the Gold level, product manufacturers have eliminated chemicals assessed by MBDC to be a high hazard to human and environmental health, and final assembly processes must be powered by 50 percent renewable energy. In 2009, manufacturers of the 47 Gold-certified products committed to using more than 8,500 MWh of renewable energy, the equivalent of powering 760 US homes for a year.
Also in 2009, MBDC expanded its consumer product certifications, working with clients including Nestle Waters North America, Method Products, Kiehl's Since 1851, Aveda Corporation and Van Houtum Papier BV in the Netherlands. MBDC's international client base grew to include companies in Spain, Germany, Italy and Japan.
"Over the past year, we've noticed more companies coming to us because they see an opportunity to be recognized as leaders in sustainability from governments and NGOs, but also from consumers," said Jay Bolus, VP of Technical Operations at MBDC. "Even in challenging economic times, sustainability is becoming more central to their way of doing business, and they're willing to put in the work."
Cradle to Cradle Certification by MBDC gives global manufacturers across industries a way to verify and market their products' sustainability attributes and demonstrate environmental leadership. The certification process takes into account five criteria: material health, material reutilization, renewable energy use, water stewardship and social responsibility. Companies incorporate these criteria into future product development to create a continuous improvement and learning cycle. The program has four achievement levels: Basic, Silver, Gold and Platinum.
"Method is committed to making innovative products and packaging that are sustainable and green to the core, like our business," said Adam Lowry, Method co-founder and chief greenskeeper. "Obtaining external verification from MBDC, the people who wrote the book on Cradle to Cradle design, reinforces the work we're doing to make our products safe for people and the environment, and it reflects our authentic mission of sustainability at a time when many companies talk about being green."
"Since we began as a New York City pharmacy more than 150 years ago, Kiehl's has been a leader in developing efficacious, safe products that utilize the highest quality natural ingredients - it only makes sense that we would want to take this next step by putting the sustainability of our products under rigorous, external review," said Roberta Weiss, Senior Vice President, Global Marketing and Product Development for Kiehl's. "We're extremely pleased with our Gold certification, and look forward to making our products more sustainable over time."