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BRUSSELS – A group of non-profit organisations including Fashion Revolution, Clean Clothes Campaign and the Fair Trade Advocacy Office have raised concerns about the EU’s impending Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (PEF-CR), suggesting they provide only a “limited and ‘unholistic’ picture of product impact”.  

In an open letter to European legislators, the NGOs called into question the credibility of lifecycle assessment (LCA) data, the Higg Materials Sustainability Index, the lack of diversity of representation in the tool’s development and its inability to account for social aspects, such as factory conditions and wages, saying the PEF should “not be used as the standalone method” behind textile product labelling for substantiating green claims.  

In response to the critics, Andrew Martin, vice president of membership and stakeholder engagement at the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC), which develops Higg Index methodology, told Ecotextile News: “The PEF was never meant … to capture elements such as social and labour impacts”, and called upon the European Commission “to be unflinching in its commitment to the PEF”, which has been nearly a decade in development already.  

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