Werner & Mertz receives international award for exemplary sustainable product design
In New York the Mainz-based company of Werner & Mertz received the international Cradle to Cradle Products Innovator Award for its well-known brands FROSCH and green care PROFESSIONAL.
Winners of the respected international award are selected by a jury of internal and external experts affiliated with the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute, a non-profit organization with headquarters in San Francisco. The Innovator Award recognizes companies that manage their production in closed loops according to the Cradle to Cradle® principle in order to achieve maximum sustainability. Companies so honored are considered pioneers in their industries.
"The international recognition that comes with the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovator Award validates once again the demands we make of ourselves and our self-imposed quality standards," said Werner & Mertz CEO Reinhard Schneider at the awards ceremony at Conrad Hotel in New York City.
"We will continue following the Cradle to Cradle ®TM product design path with full engagement and practice genuine eco-effectiveness with our brands and products," said in confirmation of the cleaning and care company's commitment to sustainability. "Nowadays it is technically possible to develop highly effective products – in our case that means strong cleaning products – that also meet the highest environmental standards along the entire value chain. Decades of experience as a sustainability pioneer have brought us to this point."
Since 2013 Werner & Mertz has had its FROSCH brand and industrial consumer line green care PROFESSIONAL certified by the demanding Cradle to Cradle® process. Werner & Mertz was the first company in the cleaning industry in Europe to receive Cradle to Cradle CertifiedTM Gold for the Frosch Citrus Shower & Bath Cleaner. In the same year, 11 green care PROFESSIONAL products also received the GOLD certification. Today a total of 18 products bear the highly coveted distinction.
Cradle to Cradle®: Think and develop in cycles
Cradle to Cradle® stands in contrast to the widespread linear product principle "cradle to grave" in which materials often flow from their sources to their disposal without conscious consideration given to long-term protection of natural resources. Cradle to Cradle® on the other hand is based on designing products for smooth integration into biological or technical cycles. For its strict adherence to this principle, Werner & Mertz has now been honored with the international Cradle to Cradle Products Innovator Award. The challenge is in planning the product's progress through a closed material cycle and in choosing product materials that are suitable for a safe and complete return to the biosphere or for recovery and high-quality reuse. The jury of the Innovator Products award confirmed the positive impression Werner & Mertz made with its products in the category "material health".
New products from Werner & Mertz will be designed in such a way that the quality of recovered recycling fractions increases and the efficacy of recycling improves or, at the very least, remains constant. Ingredients, including pigments and additives, are selected to preclude toxic effects during use or in other phases of manufacturing, recycling and reuse.
In keeping with the Cradle to Cradle® principle, crude oil, for instance, used one time to make plastic, remains in the cycle and is not irretrievably burned. The energy for recycling, as for other production processes, should be drawn whenever possible from renewable sources in an environmentally and climate-friendly fashion. A good example of this is the production of a new PET bottle from an old PET bottle.
"Integrally sustainable is the Werner & Mertz credo,” said Schneider at the awards ceremony in New York for the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovator Award. "I know that credible eco products like Frosch or green care PROFESSIONAL can come only from a company that consistently pursues sustainability in everything it does."
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