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LONDON – Fashion brands using vague marketing claims such as “greener” or “more sustainable” cotton could face legal action for flouting proposed new guidelines on environmental claims in the UK. The Competition and Market’s Authority (CMA) has set out the guidelines to give businesses an idea of the types of misleading green claims which would likely fall foul of the law. It also wants to create a more level playing field around environmental marketing claims.

As well as the need to be accurate, clear and unambiguous, the guidelines call for businesses to make “fair and meaningful” comparisons, to not “hide or omit information,” for claims “to be substantiated,” and to consider the full lifecycle of a product.

Talking to Apparel Insider, the CMA confirmed that vague statements such as “more sustainable cotton” would “absolutely be something we would look at” – with potentially major ramifications for the marketing of Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) members. Other cotton standards which market themselves as more sustainable will also fall under the spotlight.

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