What is PEF

The European Commission proposed the Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods as a common way of measuring environmental performance. 

The approach was tested between 2013-2018 together with more than 280 volunteering companies and organisations. Based on the results of the testing, the European Commission is now exploring how to use the Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods in policies. The European Commission launched a series of consultations on this subject in 2018. Read the report here. 

The 2020 Circular Economy Action Plan foresees that “The Commission will also propose that companies substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods.” It is part of a set of interrelated initiatives to establish a strong and coherent product policy framework that will make sustainable products, services and business models the norm, and not the exception, and to transform consumption patterns so that no waste is produced in the first place.  

What could the Environmental Footprint bring?

Why is this important for the agri-food companies in the Mediterranean countries?

Because the PEF standards might become in the next few years the unique and recognized environmental certification for agri-food products in the European Union. Companies which want to be labelled as “sustainable in production” could be required to show the compliance with PEF standards. Additionally, those SMEs and micro-companies which cooperate with the large agri-food corporations – as part of their supply chain – shall be requested to be PEF-compliant.

The Product Environmental Footprint could be a game-change factor for the Mediterranean economic system, where agri-food is the first economic pillar. Approaching as soon as possible the PEF-based environmental footprint standards is becoming a key competitive asset for companies and enterprises of any size. The experience of PEFMED & PEFMED PLUS projects prepares a broad number of Mediterranean agri-food companies to switch to greener standards in line with the next generation sustainability labels based on PEF.