Our Standards

Choose Green Environmental Policy

At Choose Green we endeavour to fully support the organic and environmentally friendly industry. It is our aim to comply with current environmental standards and certifications, to ensure that our customers have the opportunity to choose only the best quality green goods currently on the market. This policy document describes how we will achieve our goal.

Food

Choose Green seeks to collaborate with food and drink retailers that sell products from certified organic producers. The high standards we aim at mean that our members can enjoy an array of organic creations available throughout the UK. We choose to work with partners based on their certifications from organisational bodies, such as the Soil Association, Organic Farmers & Growers, The Organic Food Federation, Scottish Organic Producers Association, Irish Organic Farmers and Growers Association, Organic Trust Ltd and Quality Welsh Food Certification Ltd. In addition to this, we support ethically sourced fish, following the guidelines researched by The Marine Conservation Society and certified by The Marine Stewardship Council.

At Choose Green, we are aware that some smaller producers use organic methods of production without having a certifying label, often because certification is quite expensive. We do promote these growers if their turnover less than £50,000 per year. Producers that come under this category will be clearly earmarked on the Choose Green website.

Beauty

At Choose Green we have developed our beauty standards in line with the Women’s Environmental Network. 

Organic beauty and food products are both certified by similar if not the same organisations, primarily the Soil Association, Non Food Certification (endorsed by Organic Food Federation) and Organic Farmers and Growers. Products must  be fully-certified. 

Choose Green also hopes to collaborate with retailers that sell products that have been certified by European organic certification labels, such as The Soil Association, Natrue, Eco Cert, ICEA, and Cosmebio* all of which certify organic skincare products based on criteria met by manufacturers.

Recently the COSMOS-standard arrived on the scene created by The Soil Association, Cosmebio*, BDIH, ICEA and Ecocert, who have formed an AISBL (non profit association without lucrative purpose) whose object is to develop the COSMOS-standard as an international and internationally recognized standard for organic and natural cosmetics. This collaborative organic standard, has been implemented by The Soil Association in the UK from September 2009. There is a five-year transition period during which The Soil Association licensees can reformulate their products to meet COSMOS standards. Currently health and beautycare certified products can remain certified under The Soil Association’s Health & Beautycare standards. However, The Soil Association encourages their licensees to move to COSMOS. As of 1/1/2015 The Soil Association will only certify new products to COSMOS standards, existing Health & Beautycare products that are reformulated can only be certified to COSMOS from that date. It is one to watch out for on the Choose Green website.


In short, the only chemically manufactured product we promote is Agro** which is a (natural) ingredient produced in a lab - we do not promote nature identical ingredients such as (please note the following are not all nature identical ingredients GMO, parabens, lanolins, nanoparticles, most  preservatives ( however, certain preservatives are permitted under the various cosmetic standards, it would be impossible to produce certain products especially with water content without preservatives), phthalates, different forms of retinols, synthetic colouring agents, bleaching agents, and products that are free from chemically manufactured and synthetic ingredients and detergents derived from petrochemicals or retinol. Furthermore, Choose Green requires all cosmetic products to fully disclose ingredients and to not be animal tested.


*Cosmebio is controlled by QUALITE FRANCE (Bureau Veritas). The label BIO of COSMEBIO guarantees a natural cosmetic containing ingredients resulting from Organic Agriculture and complying with stringent rules aiming to protect the consumer and the environment concerning waste, cleaning, disinfection, energy, transport and storage.It is important to know that the schedule of COSMEBIO requires 95% of ingredients to be of natural origin and to date it is the most demanding label. 

** Agro (natural) ingredient - any plant, animal or microbial product derived from agriculture, aquaculture or wild collection/harvest.

Eating out 

... coming soon ...

Transport

Choose Green seeks to collaborate with transport businesses and companies that have undertaken a broad range of measures across their fleet operations to help reduce emissions and improve efficiency. We want to make the greener choice of transport more accessible for the public. In addition, we share and support the vision and objectives of The Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership, established in 2003. This is a public-private partnership that exists to accelerate a sustainable shift towards lower carbon vehicles and fuels. Transport services that we choose to collaborate with are assessed by vehicles’ low carbon attributes, using the UK Fuel Economy label. The label synopsises carbon emissions, fuel costs and vehicle tax for different cars. Using it can help drivers choose vehicles that give off fewer emissions and are more fuel-efficient. Another approval agency that Choose Green also seeks to stand behind is The Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA), an executive agency of the Department for Transport that sets environmental and safety standards for all new road vehicles, agricultural tractors, off-road vehicles and their individual systems and components.

Thanks to the VCA, it is now possible to find low carbon vehicles on their partner website, http://carfueldata.direct.gov.uk/. On the other end of the low carbon spectrum, Choose Green actively promotes the greener option, such as cycling rather than taking a bus, taking a train rather than driving a car and using cars responsibly. We seek to collaborate with those who can make this low carbon transition easier for the public.

Electrical Goods

Choose Green promotes sustainable domestic electrical appliances based on the EU Energy Label, which is designed to give consumers a better understanding of a product’s energy performance. The label shows the total energy consumption, along with additional information relevant to that product. Products in the ‘darkest green’ category will be the most energy efficient. These standards are chosen in order to ensure that Choose Green members gain maximum value from their electrical appliances. We seek to promote electrical appliances that are at an A+ standard and above, as listed on the energy label. Most of us are aware that the ozone layer needs to be protected. Therefore choosing an appliance that is harmless to the environment is of the utmost importance. Traditionally, greenhouse gas emissions from refrigerators and cooling mechanisms were harmful to the environment, however Choose Green hopes to collaborate with those who not only score highly on the EU Energy Label but also those that trade refrigerator products that use hydro carbon and CO2 technology. Choose Green also aims to promote the electrical appliances that facilitate energy efficiency and low carbon usage in the home space.

Electricity

Choose Green wishes to support green energy suppliers, especially those that reinvest their resources into and actively promote renewable, green energy. Our standards are high: for us ‘green electricity’ means electricity produced from sources that do not impact negatively upon the environment. Of course, every type of electricity generation will have some impact, but some sources are much greener than others. The energy market we hope to engage with must be sourced from wind, solar, hydro and wave and tidal power and not nuclear (which is sometimes classified as green energy). In addition, we are interested in suppliers that source green energy from geothermal and through biomass strategies. At the moment, there is a wide range of electricity suppliers on the UK market, some of which only source energy from green sources and others that primarily source electricity from finite resources. Obviously Choose Green wishes to support the green guys but we also want to help and encourage more fossil fuel-dependent energy companies that are trying to diversify to renewable energy. Choose Green will be researching the greener tariffs that ALL these companies are creating and base our selection criteria on how much of their electricity is sourced from green energy. Ideally we would like to work with any energy suppliers’ tariff that offers at least 50% or more green energy in their fuel mix; an improvable yet considerably high level in comparison to current industry averages. As most of the renewable fuel mix is a combination of hydro, biogas, onshore and offshore wind and tidal, electricity derived from solar is more an independent choice. In recent times, an established market for the solar industry has developed and the choices now include solar water heating and photovoltaic solar panels, both of which are available across the UK. Choose Green wishes to provide the most feasible green options for our members who want to reduce their own use of non-renewable energy sources and the consequent impact this has on climate change.

Green Gyms

Choose Green seeks to promote a healthy lifestyle through the promotion of green gyms. There are two types of green gym, both of which we love. Firstly, there are those green gyms that take place outdoors and encompass physical exercise. The exercise activities can range from gardening, cycling or walking to fitness classes, all of which are based outdoors. In a lot of cases, it is an opportunity to enhance an individual’s fitness and health, while taking action to improve the outdoor environment, for example, through conservation activities. On the other hand, Choose Green is also partnering with indoor gyms and leisure centres that have a commitment to becoming greener and an environmental policy they aim to improve every year.

Eco Insulation

Firstly, it is importamt to insulate regardless of where you get your insulation from and how it is manufacturer – insulating is one of the base ways to save inergy and reduce you’r environmental impact in your house. At Choose Green we do, however, seeks to collaborate with green insulation businesses that sell eco-friendly options to improve the home. When we say eco-friendly, we mean not harmful to the environment. The installation of insulation in the home is environmentally friendly within itself, as less energy is escaping through the structure. There is a host of companies that offer insulation, retrofits and energy efficient measures across the UK, and which can be found on the Choose Green website. In true green spirit, Choose Green also presents the even more eco-friendly options when it comes to insulations, showing that low-embedded (the amount of energy required to make them in the first place such as sheep’s wool, hemp and recycled material insulation) products are durable and can equally compete on the insulation market without costing the earth!

Travel

At Choose Green we want to support travel businesses that have strong eco-friendly credentials, thereby showing a commitment to reducing their impact on the environment – these are businesses that are dedicated to finding ways of improving their environmental performance through efficient use of resources, employing strategies that reduce waste and prevent the degradation and pollution of the ecosystem. There are several ways in which businesses in the travel and holiday industries can become greener. We divide these into three categories: firstly, there are the travel companies that are working to reduce their carbon footprint through their travelling and collaborating with green organisations in an effort to reduce their overall environmental impact. Of course, we also support other holiday and travel companies that actively encourage people to consider greener options, such as cycle holidays, and travel companies with a low carbon footprint, like trains and bus operators.

Secondly, we support hotels that are committed to improving their environmental impact year on year and have long-term sustainability goals. These businesses would be accredited by external bodies such as The Global Sustainable Tourism Council, Green Tourism Business Scheme and Rainforest Alliance.

Thirdly, we also promote small guesthouses, lodges, B&Bs and farm cottages that offer food of which more than 50% of the raw material is certified by The Soil Association, Organic Farmers & Growers and Organic Food Federation, in the hope that this would make guests’ experience just that little bit tastier.

Some hospitality businesses are very small and consequently cannot afford to be certified. We have therefore decided to also promote accommodation that complies with the above if it makes less than £50K per year.

Baby

Every parent wants what’s best for his or her child. By choosing organic baby products, consumers can protect their babies’ health and enhance their wellbeing, while at the same time reducing their impact on the environment. Choose Green promotes a great range of companies that offer chemical-free and non-toxic organic food, toys, nappies, clothes and skincare products.

The organic option means healthier, nutrient rich and better tasting food for babies and children. We support businesses that sell certified organic foods produced through organic farming methods without the use of harmful pesticides or chemical fertilizers, and foods that also have no added artificial additives or preservatives. We welcome traders and farmers that sell products certified by The Food Standards Agency (FSA), The Soil Association, Organic Farmers & Growers, The Organic Food Federation, Scottish Organic Producers Association, Irish Organic Farmers and Growers Association, Organic Trust Ltd and Quality Welsh Food Certification Ltd.

‘Organic toys and clothes’ refers to products that have been produced using only organically grown fibres, meaning no pesticides, fertilisers or other toxic substances were used in the production process. Organic clothes are less likely to trigger allergies from harmful substances. We hope to support companies that sell organic clothes and toys accredited by Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), Organic Trade Association (OTA) and The Soil Association.

Certified organic skincare products are free from parabens, benzoates, perfumes, alcohol and SLS – chemicals that might irritate babies’ sensitive skin. We promote businesses that sell organic skin care products that have been accredited by the Non Food Certification Company (NFCC), Soil Association, Organic Farmers and Growers, Demeter, Natrue, Eco Cert, ICEA, Ecogarantie and Cosmebio.

Carbon off-setting

We do not encourage people to get involved with companies that do their greening via offsetting schemes, as we believe that if they genuinely wanted to be green then they should reflect it in their core products and services, instead of getting external organisations to do offsetting for them.

In the very rare event that you choose to purchase from companies that are offsetting, then, as a rule of thumb, use companies that are not commercially dependent on their customers.

Choose Green



Choose Green is passionate and dedicated to mitigating climate change. We strive to achieve this through our accessible scheme that allows consumers to choose fantastic green products and services at discounted prices. Here at Choose Green Headquarters, our small team is committed to being as green as possible, each doing their little bit by walking, running and cycling to work, campaigning on behalf of environment groups within our local communities and sourcing ethically responsible office snacks. We rarely use paper or print, we use environmentally friendly cleaning products and drink lots of organic tea with organic milk!
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