The Multinational Monitor



To the editor:

I am writing to express our dismay with the editorial "Green Sale" in the October 1991 issue.

You have summarily dismissed the work of the Green Cross Certification Company without inquiring as to whether the assertions made about our program in a recent report were accurate. In fact, that report was highly inaccurate, as has been confirmed by outside sources.

In contrast to the criticisms you cited in your editorial, Green Cross applies its standards consistently, has taken extensive measures to solicit outside input on its certification criteria, and maintains well-defined relationships with retailers. For more information, readers can call or write Green Cross at 1611 Telegraph Avenue, # 1111, Oakland, CA 94612; phone is 510- 432-1415.

We have been on the front lines of a very difficult battle--the battle for accountability of environmental claims. Contrary to the implication of your editorial, we have been gratified that the many environmental groups who have taken the time to examine our program in detail have been so positive and supportive.

We agree with your statement that a neutral third party certification organization must be just that--neutral. Any organization with a real or perceived agenda runs the risk of having compromised standards when it comes to scientific review of data. From the very beginning, the Green Cross program has been organized to walk this difficult, but necessary, line between environmental organizations and the business community.

Founded by a PhD chemist, Green Cross is an organization firmly grounded in the necessity of scientific methodology in the evaluation of claims. We have assembled a team of scientists and experts in fields ranging from chemistry, engineering, product and packaging design, biology, toxicology, nutrition and agricultural sciences.

Unlike Green Seal, Green Cross is not set up like an environmental organization with an outside Board of Directors consisting of individuals from environmental and business groups. Membership on our Board of Directors is restricted to employees of the company. Moreover, Green Cross is owned in its entirety by the founders and employees. We feel this arrangement is the one most consistent with our mission to provide rigorous, independent evaluation of claims.

Linda Brown
Vice President, Communications
Green Cross Certification Co.
Oakland, California

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