The development of standards of the Vitality Leaf system is a multi-stage procedure, that includes an independent evaluation.
1. Start of standard’ development
The first step is the selection of product groups for which environmental preference criteria are required.
The initiator of the standard’ development is the Central Authority of the Vitality Leaf System of voluntary environmental certification of products, works and services for their life cycle – the Ecological Union.
In most cases, the decision to start developing a standard is made on the basis of requests from manufacturers interested in certification.
Information on the beginning of the development of a new standard is posted on the Ecological Union website, published in the Vitality Leaf digest, and is also distributed through industry media.
2. Development of a standard’ draft version
System experts are developing a standard’ draft version, which includes:
Product group description and market analysis.
Analysis of existing international environmental preference standards.
Analysis of the existing product life cycle assessment studies (LCA), environmental impact assessment at all stages of the LC on the main environmental aspects (energy efficiency, emissions, discharges, waste, harmful substances in the product).
Definition of the list of indicators for verification during laboratory tests.
Determination of environmental and functional requirements for the product group.
The standard’ draft version undergoes an internal assessment of compliance with the principles of the international standard ISO 14024 (the basic standard of the Vitality Leaf System).
3. Public assessment
An objective and comprehensive public assessment ensure the transparency of the certification procedure and practical applicability of the standard for enterprises operating in modern market conditions.
The criteria of the Standard are evaluated in terms of their objectivity, accessibility, measurability and accuracy. The criteria should reflect the most significant aspects of the environmental impact of the product, consider the safety requirements for human health, the functional and environmental characteristics of the product.
All comments or questions received from participants in the public assessment are recorded by the expert responsible for the development of the standard. Expert answers questions and makes the necessary changes to the text of the draft standard.
After the expiration of the public evaluation period (usually at least 20 working days), the final version of the standard is prepared considering all comments received. The final version is approved by the Head of CA.
4. Revision of the standard
Environmental safety standards are subject to regular review due to changes in legislation, technology improvement, as well as the need to increase the level of requirements that allow us to highlight the best products and advanced technologies, thereby pushing the business to improve the environmental safety of its products, and the market to greener development.
The updated version of the standard also undergoes a public assessment, after which it is accepted as valid.