Safer Chemicals - Environmental Defense Fund Supply Chain Solutions Center

Safer Chemicals

Behind the Label: a blueprint for safer chemicals

We need a new marketplace paradigm.

The chemicals used in your products and packaging have a direct impact on the health of consumers, the environment and workers; yet, this impact is seldom mentioned in sustainability discussions. Over the last several decades, we have begun to learn that many of the chemicals we rely on today are linked to diseases and disorders like asthma, infertility, and cancer or cause damaging environmental impacts, like toxicity to fish. As we understand more about the connection between chemicals and health, companies face growing risks and opportunities.

Consumers and investors are demanding safer chemicals in products. Regulatory bodies around the globe are trying to play catch-up and restrict or ban toxic chemicals from commerce. But if we want a future built on safer chemicals, government can’t do it alone. We also need companies like yours to lead.

Fortunately, EDF is here to help. Our resources will help build your understanding of the toxic chemicals in consumer products, answer why companies should develop safer chemical strategies, and provide further resources for you to dive deeper.

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Explore Safer Chemicals

Your Chemical Footprint

Explore your "Chemical Footprint": the total amount of chemicals of concern used in your business.

View All Your Chemical Footprint Resources

Pillars of Leadership for a Safer Marketplace

EDF designed the Five Pillars of Leadership as a resource to help companies reduce risk, advance safer products and build consumer trust. The pillars are informed by the best scientific research available and years of experience working with companies to scale best practices.

View All Pillars of Leadership for a Safer Marketplace Resources

Safer Food

Consumers are increasingly concerned about the substances used to flavor, color, preserve and package their food. Corporate leaders can improve the safety of food additives and contaminants.

View All Safer Food Resources

Safer Personal Care Products

Demand for safer beauty and personal care products has steadily increased. Many companies, including major retailers and brands, are changing practices and ingredients in response to consumer demands.

View All Safer Personal Care Products Resources

Safer Cleaning Products

Demand for safer cleaning products has steadily increased. Many companies, including major retailers and brands, are changing practices and ingredients in response to consumer demands.

View All Safer Cleaning Products Resources

Safer General Merchandise

Clothing, jewelry, home furnishings and toys — just some of the fabricated products that consumers rely on in their daily lives. But more and more, consumers and regulators are concerned about what companies know about the chemicals and materials in these products and their safety.

View All Safer General Merchandise Resources

Packaging

Chemicals of concern in packaging may migrate into food. Food companies can manage chemicals of concern in food packaging to minimize and eliminate contamination in food.

View All Packaging Resources

Business Case

Adopting a safer chemicals strategy is key to staying competitive in today's market. A safer chemicals strategy helps you anticipate regulatory changes, minimize risks, and build a positive reputation as an innovative and forward-thinking company.

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Innovation

Finding ways to innovate safer products is good for consumers, the environment and business growth.

View All Innovation Resources
Expert Organizations

Safer chemicals: the five pillars of leadership

In working with companies along the consumer product supply chain, EDF designed the Five Pillars of Leadership for advancing safer chemicals in the marketplace. See what leadership looks like.

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Safer Chemicals Resources

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      • Institutional Commitment, Safer Food
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Main Library

Safer Chemicals Resources

Looking for solutions that are relevant to you and your company? Here you can filter by resource title, date, type. Below (left) you can filter by narrowing categories and sub-categories, as well as where each resource sits on different levels of the sustainability journey.

Filter Library

Title

Date

Type

The Sustainability Journey

Get your company started on the sustainability journey here! From overviews and introductions to advocating for policy, and everything in between, this is where you should start.

02/25/2019

Tool

Safer chemicals 101: introduction

Discover how the chemicals used in your products and packaging have a direct impact on the health of consumers, the environment and workers; yet, this impact is seldom mentioned in sustainability discussions.

02/24/2019

Guide

Safer chemicals 101: get informed - the problem

Chemicals are the building blocks of every manufactured product. Unfortunately, some product chemicals can leach from products and are routinely detected in indoor air, food, drinking water, house dust and our bodies.

02/24/2019

Guide

Safer chemicals 101: get informed - solutions

While chemicals in your supply chain expose your company to risk, here's a high-level overview of solutions you can explore.

02/24/2019

Guide

Safer chemicals 101: get informed - strategies

A high-level overview of current strategies for tackling toxic chemicals in your supply chain

02/24/2019

Guide

Safer chemicals 101: identify key stakeholders

When pursuing a safer chemicals strategy, there are many stakeholders — both inside and outside of your company — that you may need or want to engage.

02/24/2019

Guide

Safer chemicals 101: understand the landscape

Explore some of the organizations, initiatives, and advocacy groups that use corporate engagement and/or market activism to advance safer chemicals in consumer products.

02/24/2019

Guide

State of Green Business, 2019

Each year, we take a step back from the headlines and conferences to assess how, and how much, companies were integrating sustainability into business strategy and operations.

02/23/2019

Report

Consumer goods companies: who's ready?

This report from CDP looks at which consumer goods companies are ready for the transition to a low-carbon economy.

02/23/2019

Report

GAIA supply chain assessment tool

The Genesis Advancing Innovating Accelerating (GAIA) Maturity Model is designed to help you better understand your company’s capabilities and develop a roadmap for improving sustainability across the supply chain.

02/23/2019

Tool

Corporate directors downplay ESG & defy investors

Talk about a disconcerting disconnect. The investor community is putting more pressure than ever on companies to consider environmental, social and governance issues in strategic decisions — everything from climate change to diversity — but that message is falling flat in some boardrooms.

02/20/2019

Article

BSR: The State of Sustainable Business 2018

This 10th annual questionnaire results communicate the sustainability issues that companies are most focused on today.

02/20/2019

Infographic

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