Sveriges Konsumenter i Samverkan 

AEC Association of European Consumers
- socially and environmentally aware

To the General Manager of
Procter & Gamble Europe
47 route de St. Georges
1213 Petit Lancy

13. of March 2001

Eco-labelled detergents

The use of detergents accounts for a great deal of the negative environmental impact related to the households, since they often contain chemicals that are environmentally problematic. One example is the chemical Linear Alkylbenzene Sulfonate (LAS), that has negative effects on soil and water.

Since the use of environmentally damaging chemicals like LAS is restricted eco-labelled detergents, AEC Association of European Consumers see eco-labelled detergents as an important tool in reducing the environmental problems related to the use of detergents. AEC also finds it important, that multinational companies like Procter & Gamble show their commitment to eco-labelling.

The introduction of eco-labelled detergents has given the consumers an opportunity to make an environmentally friendly choice. The dominant position of eco-labelled detergents on the Swedish market and the rapidly increasing sale of eco-labelled detergents on the Danish market show, that many consumers are willing to pay a little more for their detergents if it benefits the environment.

With this background AEC is pleased, that Procter & Gamble has a production of eco-labelled Ariel without LAS. Also AEC is pleased, that Procter & Gamble has decided to stop using LAS in the products sold on the Danish market.

As a consumer organisation AEC see it as a natural thing, if Procter & Gamble extended the progressive environmental initiatives - taken in Sweden and Denmark - to the rest of the European countries.

Procter & Gamble has made good decisions regarding Sweden and Denmark, but in a meeting in June 2000, arranged by the Danish Consumer Council June 2000, Claude Papas, Vice President Procter & Gamble Nordic, stated that Procter & Gamble aims at stop selling eco-labelled products in Sweden. Furthermore in Iceland Procter & Gamble sells the product Yes Tab-in-Tab with the Nordic eco-label, but the eco-label is hidden under at blank label.

In the light of the above AEC is concerned about Procter & Gambles commitment to eco-labelled detergents. AEC would appreciate if Procter & Gamble would clarify their exact position on eco-labelling in the European countries.

AEC would like to know:

  • if Procter & Gamble has any future plans on introducing eco-labelled detergents in the European countries?
  • in which European countries Procter & Gamble sell products containing LAS?
  • if Procter & Gamble has any plans on stop using LAS in all the European countries
We are looking forward to hearing from you
Bengt Ingerstam
President of AEC – Association of European Consumers

C/O Swedish Consumer Coalition
Box 88, S-577 22 Hultsfred

Head office in Brussels:
Rue du Commerce 70-72
1040 Brussels