A new, robust product transparency assessment for people with asthma & allergy sensitivities launches under the Global GreenTag International Product Health Declaration (GreenTag PHD™) service.
Many motivating factors, generated by indoor health impact studies, demand from manufacturers a more robust product assessment for people who suffer with asthma and allergies. Global GreenTag International has answered this call with the introduction of a new Asthma and Allergy Sensitive™ assessment under its Global GreenTag Product Health Declaration (GreenTag PHD™) and ‘In use healthiness’ toxicity assessment rating scheme – HealthRATE™.
Increasing numbers of indoor studies highlight the need to provide more thorough, product assessments that drill down beyond the ingredients’ toxicity, before products are produced to determine whether the final manufactured products are also safe for people with asthma and allergy sensitivities. This is according to David Baggs, Program Director for Global GreenTag’s product certification programs who said:
“There is a much greater need to provide consumers, and particularly professionals who are engaged in architecture, interior design and construction reporting and ranking with information that, not only reveals the toxicity of individual ingredients in products, but also with information if any of the ingredients are recognised as asthma or allergy triggers, by one of the world’s foremost professional associations that represent clinicians engaged in studying and treating environmental illness.
“Asthma and allergies cannot be simply lumped together, as they can be triggered by both natural and synthetic compounds, as well as organisms and elements in the indoor environment,” said David who also serves as CEO of Global GreenTag International (GGTI) and is a co-founder of GGTI and the Global GreenTag Product Certification Standard with Mary-Lou Kelly, GGTI’s Managing Director.
“While many aspects like dust, dust mites and pollen are typically beyond the study of products, we wanted to improve upon this area of product certification and provide a more robust and clearly defined assessment that demonstrates how a product stands up, health-wise, from the point of view of toxicity as well as asthma and allergies.
“Surfaces that contain compounds that trigger contact dermatitis or Volatile or Semi Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs & SVOCs) or products that generate fine particulates as they age and are released from products, can trigger people with lung or skin allergies.”
In the case of products contributing to the exacerbation of asthma and allergy outbreaks, indoor environment studies implicate that categories, including bedding, carpets, flooring, furniture, fabrics, paints, personal care and cleaning products, can all be part of the problem:
- A 2019 study of indoor chemical pollution in the dwellings and workplaces of 109 French farmers linked respiratory health issues, including asthma from exposure to particulate matter and Volatile Organic Compounds … asthma (9.3%) was positively associated with elevated exposure to the chemicals of benzene, trichloroethylene and halogenated hydrocarbons.
- A 2016 study published by the American Chemical Society (ACS) found a concerning combination of chemicals present and leaching or gassing off from products that people take in daily through their skin and airways, noting that indoor dust is a reservoir for commercial consumer product chemicals, including many compounds with known or suspected health effects.
- A 2015 published indoor study of a childcare centre in Seoul in South Korea conducted continuous monitoring of indoor pollutant levels 24 hours a day for 12 months. The study revealed that incidences of the allergy Atopic Dermatitis increased amongst 30 pupils with the condition. Outbreaks were linked to VOCs and Particulate Matter and this was reaffirmed when the outbreaks continued as the centre re-located to a newer and better-ventilated building.
Global GreenTag Asthma & Allergy Sensitive™ certification is undertaken in combination with the Global GreenTag Product Health Declaration (PHD™) and HealthRATE™ “Healthiness in Use’ rating scheme. The process involves:
- Undergoing a separate assessment of products under the Asthma & Allergy Sensitive and HealthRATE processes, where manufacturers must provide 100 percent transparency of product information down to 100ppm of individual ingredients.
- Applying analysis of product information, which deepens identification of products, as safe to be used, in environments, for people with asthma and allergy sensitivities.
- Comparing against data, provided by the international list of compounds, identified by the US Association for Occupational and Environmental Clinics (AOEC), which specialise in the prevention and treatment of occupational and environmental illnesses, including identifying the internal and external triggers of asthma and allergies that can lead to respiratory and skin issues. This is to ensure that products awarded the Asthma and Allergy Sensitive™ claim do not contain compounds proven to cause reactions in even a single person above the declaration threshold of 100ppm.
- Providing manufacturers with a detailed product transparency report they can use to support tenders on projects; notably to submit to projects registered for building certifications under programs that formally recognise Global GreenTag’s PHD. These include WELL under the International WELL™ Building Institute, and LEED® under the US Green Building Council, and soon others.
Once products, which have undergone these processes and have been assessed as eligible, they can be awarded HealthRATE rankings and, additionally with an Asthma & Allergy Sensitive™ Mark, so that manufacturers can rank their products in the marketplace and promote them with either a BronzeHEALTH, SilverHEALTH, GoldHEALTH or PlatinumHEALTH rating together with the Asthma and Allergy Sensitive™ claim. These Marks enable consumers and professionals to understand not only the healthiness of products from a toxicity point of view but also the asthma and allergy sensitivity value of a product, at a glance.
For more information and comment about the HealthRATE and Asthma & Allergy Sensitive claim system, please contact Global GreenTag International:
David Baggs (CEO & Program Director)
Phone: 1300 669 997 (Australia free call) or +61 7 3399 9686
More about David Baggs – BIO LINK
Global GreenTag currently has more than 16,000 products under certification in over 22 countries, used in buildings and offices throughout Australia and the world.
Voted one of the Top 100 Most Trusted Brands in Australia over 4 years running, Global GreenTag International simplifies the selection of environmentally sustainable, healthy and ethical products for industries like Architecture, Design and Construction, Personal Care, and Cleaning, using Global GreenTag CertTM one of the most scientifically advanced, product certification and declaration systems in the world.
Global GreenTag CertTM assesses and then ranks products through leading LCA based product ecolabelling and rating schemes. It also provides third party, assessed product declaration programs, including an Environmental Product Declaration (EPD), a Product Health Declaration (PHD) and a Modern Slavery Declaration (MSD) program, the first product level declaration of its kind in the world, designed to help manufacturers and procurement teams eliminate incidences of modern slavery in global supply chains.
Helping professionals to make informed decisions about preferred green and ethical products to protect both the health of environment, workers and consumers, Global GreenTag launched its Certification Mark in 2010. Registered in Australia, the United States and Canada as a third-party certification body, Global GreenTag is the only “one-stop” operator related to the world’s four major green building rating tools (LEED/WELL/GreenStar/BREEAM).
At the same time, it is also one of the certification bodies with the most ISO international standards compliance in the world. Globally, Global GreenTag certification is the first certification mark approved by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), the United States Patent and Trademark Office and recognised or compliant with all the major global Green Building Rating Tools.