The EU Ecolabel

The EU Ecolabel, the EU’s label of environmental excellence, is not only recognised in all EU member states, but also in Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland. The voluntary label, introduced in 1992 with EU Regulation EEC No 880/92, has become a reference for consumers who want to contribute to pollution reduction by buying environmentally friendly products and services.

The EU Ecolabel is awarded to products and services that have fewer adverse environmental impacts during their entire life cycle than the average products and services on the market, while guaranteeing the same level of security and fitness for use.

The EU Ecolabel is awarded to products and services that have fewer adve

The EU Ecolabel is awarded to products and services that have fewer adverse environmental impacts during their entire life cycle than the average products and services on the market, while guaranteeing the same level of security and fitness for use.

Look for this label when you go shopping:

A reliable label for products and services

Approximately 70,000 products and services have been awarded the EU Ecolabel. These products and services range from cleaning products, printed products, personal care products, electronic equipment and textiles to lubricants, floor coverings, paints and varnishes. The EU Ecolabel can also be granted to services like tourist accommodation and camping sites. The label is valid throughout the EU common market as well as in Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland. Compared to national labels, this represents a clear advantage to businesses that sell their products all over Europe. In accordance with ISO standard 14024, the EU Ecolabel is a Type I environmental label, which stands for the highest quality among labels. The German government's Blue Angel ecolabel, created in 1978, also complies with this standard.

Awarding the EU Ecolabel

The EU Ecolabel is a voluntary scheme. Its use is not compulsory. To obtain the EU Ecolabel for products and services, the following steps must be taken:

  • Manufacturers, importers, service providers and retailers can apply to the competent national body for the EU Ecolabel. RAL gGmbH is the responsible body in Germany.
  • The application has to be filed with the competent body of the member state in which the product was manufactured, initially placed on the market or imported from a third country. If the same products are produced in several member states or when a product is imported from a third country, the applicant can decide in which of these member states it wishes to file the application. 
  • The EU Ecolabel can be awarded by all EU member states. The first letters of the licence number indicate the respective competent body, e.g. NL/YYY/ZZZ shows that it was awarded by the Dutch authority. An application for the EU Ecolabel only has to be filed with one competent body. After the contract covering the terms of use has been signed, the Ecolabel is valid all over Europe.
  • RAL gGmbH reviews the submitted documents for compliance with the respective criteria. If all requirements are met, RAL gGmbH concludes a contract with the licence holder on the use of the EU Ecolabel.

Further information

The EU Ecolabel website provides additional information on:

  • the criteria to be met
  • product and service groups, their current validity and the points of contact at Germany’s certification body RAL gGmbH
  • the application procedure and changes to/ extensions of existing contracts
  • the use of the EU Ecolabel logo
  • the EU registration procedure