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UK government watchdog to investigate misleading environmental claims

By Rachel Douglass

14 Jan 2022


Image: Marcell Viragh via Unsplash

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has announced it will be commencing a review of environmental claims in the fashion retail sector, investigating how products and services that claim to be ‘eco-friendly’ are marketed.

The review aims to determine whether consumers could be being misled, as more and more retailers make claims centred around the environment to capitalise on the growing interest in sustainable alternatives.

Ultimately, the organisation is looking to determine whether businesses are complying with consumer protection laws.

This closely follows a publication released by the CMA in 2021, which outlined guidelines on making environmental claims. The organisation has stated that it plans to investigate other sectors too.

If breaches are found, it could result in the CMA taking “appropriate action” before the review of fashion retail has been completed, such as enforcement.

Its investigation will look into claims of individual sustainable items of clothing, recycled materials in new clothing and entire ranges of clothing in stores that have been branded as ‘sustainable’.

The CMA is asking members of the public to submit experiences they have encountered in regards to issues covering the green claims code.