The intention is good, but a new labeling scheme should communicate on disposal instead, the organization believes.
From 3 July, a new labeling scheme will be added to the collection. The EU has decided that a dead sea turtle should adorn the packaging of a number of plastic products to remind it not to be thrown in the wild.
The products include disposable drinking cups and the packaging of cigarettes, wet wipes and sanitary napkins, as well as tampons and insertion sleeves therefor.
The intention to inform consumers is good. But the label’s message resonates negatively, and it can have an effect, says strategic communicator in the environmental organization Plastic Change.
– One has chosen to go with the negative communication that shows how not to dispose of it. But negative messages from a behavioral perspective are not what usually give the best results, she says.
The turtle is a symbol of a negative consequence of throwing, for example, wet wipes or tampons in the toilet. But it is perhaps too far from most people’s everyday lives, says Anne Aittomaki.
Instead, one could with advantage the sea illustrated how to concretely dispose of the product, she believes.
– You could show a trash can. To show how to properly dispose of the product appropriately, instead of showing what not to do, she says.
In 2018, there were around 70 labeling schemes in Denmark.
According to Anne Aittomaki, one should be careful not to make too many labeling schemes. She does not think it takes many more stickers before the consumer gets confused.
– The brand must have a good function because consumers are asked to relate to it and spend time on it, she says.
– It may well be that it sounds politically correct because you have done your part, but it will not change anything if it makes no sense to the end consumer.
According to Anne Aittomaki, on the other hand, the positive thing about the labeling scheme is that it makes the consumer aware of plastic-containing products. Also the ones that most people might think are made of natural materials.
– Many people think that cigarette butts look like something made of cork or wood. That it has a sense of nature, and therefore something is going on. With the labeling, it becomes clear to the consumer that it contains plastic, she says.
/ ritzau /