The Cradle to Cradle Certified™ Product Standard guides designers and manufacturers through a continual improvement process that looks at a product through five quality categories — material health, material reutilization, renewable energy and carbon management, water stewardship, and social fairness. A product receives an achievement level in each category — Basic, Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum — with the lowest achievement level representing the product’s overall mark.
Product assessments are performed by a qualified independent organization trained by the Institute. Assessment Summary Reports are reviewed by the Institute, which certifies products meeting the Standard requirements, and licenses the use of the Cradle to Cradle Certified™ word and design marks to the product manufacturer. Every two years, manufacturers must demonstrate good faith efforts to improve their products in order to have their products recertified.
Knowing the chemical ingredients of every material in a product, and optimizing towards safer materials.
- Identify materials as either biological or technical nutrients
- Understand how chemical hazards combine with likely exposures to determine potential negative impacts to human health and the environment
Designing products made with materials that come from and can safely return to nature or industry.
- Maximize the percentage of rapidly renewable materials or recycled content used in a product
- Maximize the percentage of materials that can be safely reused, recycled, or composted at the product’s end of use
- Designate your product as technical (can safely return to industry) and/or biological (can safely return to nature)
Renewable Energy & Carbon Management
Envisioning a future in which all manufacturing is powered by 100% clean renewable energy.
- Source renewable electricity and offset carbon emissions for the product’s final manufacturing stage
Manage clean water as a precious resource and an essential human right.
- Address local geographic and industry water impacts at each manufacturing facility
- Identify, assess, and optimize any industrial chemicals in a facility’s effluent
Design operations to honor all people and natural systems affected by the creation, use, disposal or reuse of a product.
- Use globally recognized resources to conduct self-assessments to identify local and supply chain issues and third party audits to assure optimal conditions
- Make a positive difference in the lives of employees, and the local community