What Makes a Product Eco Friendly?

2020 is the year that of the planet. Everyone’s saying it but what does that mean? 

In the world of promotional products, branded giveaways, and swag, it can seem very confusing. After all, a reusable water bottle is eco-friendly because it eliminates single-use plastics, but what about the material it's made from? Is that eco-friendly? 

At Gorilla Marketing we hold sustainable and eco-friendly promotional products to a higher standard and help you to understand the benefits of going green with your branded merchandise. When deciding which eco-friendly products to add to our collection, we look at several different attributes that show us the value the product has to the environment so you can decide for yourself the value a given item adds to the environment.  

Criteria #1: Reduces Impact 

Many products are made from a percentage of renewable and sustainable materials to significantly reduce the amount of plastic that is used in making products. These products will range anywhere from 20%-90% environmentally friendly fiber with the rest of the product being made from polypropylene. This significantly reduces the impact these products have on the environment.  

Criteria #2: Reusable 

Reusable items are sustainable alternatives to everyday items. These items may not necessarily be made from a sustainable material, but they are made to replace items that we often don’t use as reusable. Reusable straws and grocery totes are some of the more popular reusable items that help make a sustainable impact.  This year, we will start seeing more sustainable items like this such as reusable sandwich bags and produce bags. These items will help eliminate the wasteful plastic options that are overly used and wasted in the environment.  

Criteria #3: Made from Recycled Material 

Items made from recycled water bottles or RPET are popular, sustainable and impactful. These items are usually fully made from these recycled materials and significantly reduce wasteful consumption and come with a fun backstory. Knowing the story, as well as the percent of recycled material in a product makes decision making easier. 

Criteria #4: Biodegradable  

Items that are made from biodegradable material can be left outside and will begin to decompose. Items such as backpacks made from washable paper and some cardboard pens are biodegradable options. Suppliers of these items typically indicate an amount of time. Shorter time to biodegrading is more desirable. 

Criteria #5: Socially Compliant and Chemical Free 

Prop 65 compliant items are important to our health and well-being. The items in the Eco Collection are all Prop 65 compliant (unless otherwise noted on the item description). We also note if items are BPA free, PVC free and Phthalate free.  

Criteria #6: Organic 

Organic cotton is a popular material for totes and apparel items. It is created without using chemical pesticides or harmful fertilizers, making it a better alternative to everyday cotton.  

Criteria #7: Certified Products  

Certified recycled products and FSC certified paper products are products that have specific certifications to back up what the product is made form. Certified recycled products need to have a certain percentage of recycled content that meets Federal Trade Commision guidelines. FSC certified paper is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, guaranteeing that no harm was done to the world’s forest in the creation of that product.  

As the Eco-friendly product category continues to grow in popularity, we will add to our collection. Our hope is that by sharing information such as this and highlighting awesome products that meet these criteria, we can help to increase the popularity of these products and see the offering expanded to include even more choices for products that don’t negatively impact our environment.  

Have any questions or looking for something specific?  

Reach out to us about The Eco Collection!