Cradle to Cradle Product Innovation Institute
I am incredibly excited to share some news with ecofabulous readers and Cradle to Cradle enthusiasts worldwide. This month, the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute celebrated issuing its first certifications for the products that met the rigorous Cradle to Cradle CertifiedCM protocol for product manufacturing and design. These longstanding supporters of the Cradle to Cradle® framework, Desso B.V., Herman Miller, Shaw Industries, and Steelcase Inc., were the first four of the existing 125 companies holding the mark to have products certified by the nonprofit organization. Moving forward, the Institute will continue to work with the hundreds of participating companies worldwide to issue product certifications for the Cradle to Cradle CertifiedCM program. As a board member of the Institute, this is a point of both personal excitement as well as
Cradle to Cradle CertifiedCM is a multi-attribute program that assesses products for safety to human & environmental health, design for future use cycles and Eco effective manufacturing processes. The program provides guidelines to help businesses implement the Cradle to Cradle® framework, which focuses on using safe materials that can be recovered and reused as technical nutrients in new products or composted as biological nutrients.
Unlike single-attribute eco-labels, the Cradle to Cradle CertifiedCM program takes a comprehensive approach to evaluating the design of a product and the practices employed in manufacturing. Each product is evaluated in five categories: Material Health, Material Reutilization, Renewable Energy Use, Water Stewardship, and Social Responsibility. Products can be Cradle to Cradle CertifiedCM at one of four levels (Basic, Silver, Gold, or Platinum) based on achievement against criteria in all five categories.
The Cradle to Cradle CertifiedCM program was founded in 2005 by McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry (MBDC). Since then more than 425 products in various industries worldwide have taken part in the Cradle to Cradle CertifiedCM program. In 2010, founders William McDonough and Dr. Michael Braungart formed the non-profit institute to manage and administer the certification program as a third-party organization and make it available to a larger public. MBDC gifted an exclusive license to the Institute for the product certification mark and methodology.
The Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute is now the certifying body for the third-party eco-label. Companies who wish to have a product certified will partner with an official service provider to collect and evaluate data about the product design and manufacturing impacts and then submit a completed application to the Institute.
I would like to say a special thank you to William McDonough & Michael Braungart for their gift and for their guidance and to all of the passionate supporters of this exciting movement.