On July 16th, Walmart announced plans to develop a worldwide Sustainable Product Index. This index will measure the environmental costs that go into the creation of Walmart’s products. The concept is for consumers to know not just the impact a product will make on their wallet, but the impact the product has made on the Earth from creation to transportation and finally to eventual disposal. The consumer will know a lot more about their products, including how much responsibly sourced raw materials went into the making of the piece and whether the company invests in community development. Walmart’s wants this program to embrace transparency and allow their customers to make informed decisions.
The process starts with a 15-question survey for Walmart’s suppliers and (hopefully) will result in labeling on products similar to the nutritional labeling on food. Consumers will be able to compare product features, design and environmental impact. Then, and only then, will we start to see these issues become truly important to manufacturers.
Read more including the 15 questions at The Daily Green.