FAQs for Consumers

Why should you purchase Blue Angel products?

Products with the Blue Angel comply with a strict and transparent catalogue of criteria that focuses on aspects relevant to the environment and human health. In this respect, purchasing products with the Blue Angel guarantees that the products have a lower environmental impact and higher protection for human health in comparison to other products designed for the same purpose.

Are Blue Angel products fundamentally more expensive than other products?

No, products with the Blue Angel are not necessarily more expensive than non-certified products designed for the same purpose. However, it is possible that production costs are higher due to the use of special, high-quality materials or special environmentally compatible production methods. In some cases, manufacturers also have to cover the cost of the verifications required for certification, e.g. test results on product emissions. Yet higher costs incurred by the manufacturers are not necessarily reflected in the sales price of the products.

 

On the other hand, products with the Blue Angel can save costs due to e.g. their longer service lives, lower consumption of energy and raw materials, guaranteed repair options and free take-back systems.

Does the Blue Angel also certify foodstuffs?

No, foodstuffs and medical products are excluded from certification with the Blue Angel. 

What does the Blue Angel mean on a product?

The Blue Angel is an environmental label that was initiated by the German government. It is awarded by an independent jury to products that are environmentally friendlier than other products designed for the same purpose. The label is also designed to act as a guide for sustainable purchasing for consumers and procurement departments.

What environmental contribution do you make when you purchase Blue Angel products?

The Blue Angel certifies environmentally friendly products that stand out from other products designed for the same purpose due to their better environmental footprint. By requesting and purchasing these products, its signals to manufacturers that consumers are interested in these products and thus promotes the production of even more environmentally friendly products in the future.

A paper product made from 100% recovered paper saves the entire raw materials for the production of new paper, a low-emission varnish contains much less solvents and other pollutants and a water-conserving tap saves a lot of water. The contribution made by purchasing these products is always dependent on the comparable products and naturally the use of the product.

Do Blue Angel products protect human health?

It is often not possible to separate environmental and health protection from one another. This means that requirements for the protection of the environment usually also help to protect human health. In the case of products that can have a significant impact on health (paints, varnishes, wood preservatives, noisy equipment), the requirements mainly focus on protecting human health. Some environmental labels are primarily developed based on requirements for the prevention of risks to human health (avoidance of indoor pollutants), e.g. low-emission products made of wood and wood-based material. The use of carcinogenic substances or other substances harmful to health is excluded by the award criteria for the Blue Angel products.

When can products be certified with the Blue Angel?

In the evaluation process, the environmental label takes a holistic view of the life cycle of the product – from its production and use through to its disposal and recycling. The aim is to identify areas relevant to the environment for each product group in which environmental pollution could be significantly reduced or even avoided. For example, it makes little sense to test water-conserving taps for emissions that are harmful to health if this criteria is mainly relevant for paints. The award criteria and the compliance verifications for a product are defined individually for each product group and can be read and downloaded on this website.

What companies offer which Blue Angel products?

There are environmental labels for more than 100 groups of products and services. Almost every schoolchild uses exercise books made out of recovered paper and almost all of the photocopiers found in local authorities use recycled paper certified with the Blue Angel. Many other everyday products from various different areas of life also carry the label: e.g. furniture, laundry detergents or paints. Another major product group are building products such as wall paints, varnishes, floor coverings or insulation materials. You can find all of the products and product group on this website in the sections “Products”, “Brands” and “Suppliers” and you can also read the corresponding criteria (Basic Award Criteria).

Are the criteria for the award of the Blue Angel regularly examined and updated?

All Basic Award Criteria are reviewed periodically. Based on their product development cycles, all Basic Award Criteria have a limited term of validity that usually lasts three to four years. 

Before this term of validity expires, the German Environmental Agency examines the existing criteria and decides whether the Basic Award Criteria need to be revised. This ensures that the latest market developments and new product alternatives that are made possible due to technical advances can be taken into account. From the very beginning, this provides the necessary impetus for change and ensures that the criteria are regularly updated.

What sanctions can be imposed for the misuse of the Blue Angel?

If it is discovered that a product is not complying with the requirements defined in the contract or that the Blue Angel is being misused in any other way, the manufacturer will lose their right to use the Blue Angel.