Make the Label Count brings together an international coalition of organisations who want to ensure clothing sustainability claims in the EU are credible.



Sustainability claims must be transparent, accurate and complete, allowing consumers to make informed choices about the clothing they buy.

Response to Norwegian Consumer Authority ruling of Higg Index

The Make the Label Count (MTLC) coalition welcomes the Norwegian Consumer Authority’s conclusion that communicating product sustainability through the Higg Material Sustainability Index (MSI) is in violation of Norwegian greenwashing regulations, and also commends the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC)’s subsequent decision to pause the use of Higg MSI scoring for consumer-facing sustainability claims.

The move by the Norwegian Consumer Authority sends an important message to fashion retailers worldwide that environmental claims need to be accurate if they are to empower consumers to make truly impactful purchasing decisions.

The conclusions of the Norwegian Consumer Authority confirm the MTLC coalition’s concerns about the methodological shortcomings of current Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)-based methods used to quantify the environmental impacts of textile products. Its decision underlines the need for regulation to substantiate green claims to ensure they are based on fair and accurate assessments and avoid flaws such as those of the Higg MSI, thereby more correctly informing consumer choices.

Learn more about Make the Label Count and read our recent white paper here.

The EU is shifting to a climate-neutral and circular economy, which means products need to be more energy-efficient, durable, reusable, repairable, and recyclable. Because the fashion and textile industry has such a big environmental footprint, the European Commission is reviewing sustainability claims on apparel and footwear and is exploring options including “mandatory sustainability labelling” for products and using the Product Environmental Footprint methodology to substantiate claims.

This short animation explores what this could mean and why PEF should not be used in its current form:

MAKE THE LABEL COUNT. Do clothes contribute to the microplastics problem?


Having a standard methodology for sustainability claims can help make fashion and textiles greener. The proposal is likely to set a global standard and could deliver positive outcomes if the method behind it is amended. We must act now and get it right to ensure the claims that companies will use on their labels are credible, that consumers are not misled and to help the industry to make the green transition the EU wants to see.


Consumers should be able to trust sustainability claims on their clothing labels. We are asking European Commission policymakers to update the PEF methodology to make the label count for consumers. Here is where we can start:

Recycling symbol - three arrows in the shape of a triangle

Renewability & Biodegradability

Only products made from renewable raw materials can be truly sustainable. The inherently circular attributes of natural fibres, including renewability at start-of-life and biodegradability at the end-of-life need to be accounted for in a credible product claim. Inclusion of parameters to account for biological circularity could address this limitation.

A plastic bottle

Accounting for microplastics

The environmental impacts of microplastic pollution should be included to inform consumer choices. Laundering synthetic clothes accounts for 35% of primary microplastics released into the environment.

A factory emitting gases

Equitable comparison of fibres

The impact of forming natural fibres is fully accounted for in PEF, whereas the impact of forming fossil fuel-based fibres starts at extraction. With clothing made from fossil fuel-based fibres receiving an environmentally ‘free’ raw material (ie oil), it’s not possible to have an equitable comparison of products, and technically sound solutions to this problem have been proposed.

A clock

Duration of service

The use-phase has a major influence on a garment’s environmental footprint. Factors that extend the lifetime of clothing, including adjustable fit, odour resistance, wrinkle resistance, less frequent laundering and the rate of reuse by further owners should be included in PEF methodology.

Hands holding in the shape of a heart

Social impacts

The socio-economic impact of fibre production and textile manufacturing is not considered in the PEF methodology. Credible measures of sustainability encompass planet, people and prosperity.

An arrow in the shape of a circle - a symbol for circularity

Production practices

The impacts of fibre production are assessed without considering whether sustainable agricultural and mining management practices are used. By failing to assess and incentivise sustainable production practices, an important opportunity to achieve the EU’s goal of ‘protecting and restoring natural ecosystems’ is lost.


MAKE THE LABEL COUNT. Do clothes contribute to the microplastics problem?

Whitepaper details current problems with PEF

The PEF system is designed to facilitate like-with-like comparisons, but assessments of textiles made from natural and synthetic fibres are not yet comparable. Current PEF limitations present a significant challenge to the delivery of both EU strategy and the PEF goal of providing fair comparisons of products based on their environmental credentials. This white paper addresses the concerns with the current PEF methodology, identifies the main challenges posed and provides recommendations to not only offer more meaningful guidance to the EU consumer but also assist in delivering the EU’s environmental policy and sustainability objectives.

Download Now

MAKE THE LABEL COUNT. Do clothes contribute to the microplastics problem?

Joint MEP letter distributed to European Parliament

MEP Carlo Calenda and 29 colleagues delivered a letter to the EU executive, asking them to carefully consider the upcoming textile legislation. The letter draws their attention to the PEF Process, which could result in supporting a greenwashing scenario in the clothing and textile sector. If the PEFCR category rules are not adjusted to include renewability, biodegradability and microplastic pollution, the 30 signatories believe it would “fundamentally undermine the credibility of any EU action and the ability of consumers to act responsibly”.

Read the full letter.

MAKE THE LABEL COUNT. Do clothes contribute to the microplastics problem?

The Great Greenwashing Machine

A white paper, published by Veronica Bates-Kassatly and Dorothee Baumann-Pauly with the Geneva Center For Business and Human Rights (GCBHR), attempts to expose fast fashion’s false sustainability promises. The first in a series of papers highlights a flawed definition of sustainability in fashion and how unscientific methods and selective implementation hinder meaningful change. This second whitepaper demonstrates that even the environmental impact of fashion is not being correctly assessed, neither broadly, nor narrowly.

Read Part 1 here and Part 2 here.


Watch the recording of the Make the Label Count launch event with EU policymakers, academics and industry representatives.

Make the Label Count. What if a label could tell me which top is designed for longevity?


Delivering EU environmental policy through fair comparisons of natural and synthetic fibre textiles in PEF – Executive Summary (ENG)


Delivering EU environmental policy through fair comparisons of natural and synthetic fibre textiles in PEF - White Paper (ENG)


Make the Label Count - Briefing Document (ENG)


Make the Label Count - Briefing Dokument (DE)


Make the Label Count - Document d’information (FR)


Make the Label Count - Documento informativo (IT)


Make the Label Count - Documento Informativo (ES)


Make the Label Count - Documento Informativo (PT)

“Credible claims in the fashion industry is a fundamental step towards ensuring consumers make informed choices when buying garments. The fact that this is now being implemented at EU level is wonderful. But it is fundamental for claims on labelling to be accurate and comprehensive, so it does not misrepresent or unfairly favour certain fibre groups. This is why I am proud to be working on the Make the Label Count campaign, calling for a level playing field for sustainability claims and in doing so, drive the change we so urgently need.”
Livia Firth
Make the Label Count co-spokesperson and
Creative Director of Eco-Age
“We’ve had major advancements in research and knowledge around the environmental impacts of the textile industry, but these aren’t yet included in the current PEF methodology. If the Commission proceeds to use the PEF without updating it, the fashion and textile industry won’t make the green transition we all want to see.””
Dalena White
Make the Label Count co-spokesperson and
Secretary General of the International Wool Textile Organisation
“Life Cycle Assessments can only be compared if they follow exactly the same methodology and boundaries. Such a suite of generic LCAs for textile fibres does not exist. The EU cannot create non-fiscal barriers to trade that will negatively impact some of the poorest on the planet, without first commissioning the studies required.”
Veronica Bates Kassatly
Independent Analyst


Join us in advocating for improvements to PEF for clothing sustainability claims on labels in the EU. Together we can make the label count!

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Australian Wool Innovation
The Campaign for Wool
Cashmere and Camel Hair Manufacturers Institute
Changing Markets Foundation
Cotton Australia
Discover Natural Fibers Initiative
European Industrial Hemp Association
IndiDye Natural Color Co.,Ltd
International Sericultural Commission
International Silk Union
International Wool Textile Organisation
John Smedley
Mohair RSA
Peru Alpaca Yarn & Textile
Plastic Soup
The Schneider Group