Green camouflage, sometimes greenwashing, is a form of environmental marketing that makes extensive use of “green” PR and techniques that aim to mislead consumers about an organization’s or manufacturer’s environmental goals for a product or service and present them in a favorable light.
The purpose of greenwashing is to obtain reputational and financial benefits from misleading and manipulating public opinion, regarding the business practices of the company and the benefits of the product or service. The main goal of greenwashing – more profits, with fewer costs to the environment.
The main purpose of greenwashing is to create a positive image of the company, brand, and product, supposedly complying with environmental laws, eco-standards, and people’s environmental aspirations.
- Greenwashing is an attempt to capitalize on the growing demand for environmentally friendly products;
- Greenwashing is “laundering” the tarnished reputation of companies found to be environmentally unfriendly and not complying with environmental laws
- Greenwashing is the desire to avoid the high costs of retrofitting production and changing the business model when companies do little for the environment, but only create a positive image, taking into account the requirements of environmental regulations, laws, and public demands
Essentially, greenwashing is “laundering” the image of the company, the brand, and the product, by manipulating the attention, opinion, and loyalty of the product and brand audience, the public, the society, and state institutions.
In practice, the companies, understand the social aspiration for the protection of the ecology of the Earth and the requirement of the audience in the field of observance of ecological norms, introduction of modern ecological and economical production technologies, turnover of packages and expendable parts of machines and equipment, and reduce all this to a minimum and are engaged only information of a certain image favorable to the public, spending large resources for formation and popularization of such image – “washing” themselves in the eyes of consumers, society and the state.
A greenwashing product goes through a process of renaming, rebranding, or repackaging. Greenwashing products may convey the idea that they are more natural, healthier, or chemical-free than competing brands, even though they are still completely, partially, or fundamentally unsafe and unsustainable.
Greenwashing promotion. Greenwashing is done through press releases and commercials, sponsorships, and joint promotions with environmentalists, through bribing officials and the expert community.
The Danger of Greenwashing. Greenwashing can give a false impression that a company or its products are environmentally friendly. Greenwashing is often resorted to by companies that use:
- “dirty manufacturing techniques.”
- Raw materials not approved for use in the production of such products;
- Raw materials are produced and processed using environmentally destructive technologies;
- “dirty energy”;
- companies dependent on non-renewable resources.
Marketing and Greenwashing.
Marketing strongly opposes greenwashing of non-polluting industries and products, as well as the greenwashing of such companies and products.
- Packaging and advertising should explain the environmental requirements of the product in plain language and easy-to-read typeface.
- Marketing communications should state what is ecologically relevant: the product, the packaging, or just part of the product or packaging.
- When promoting, must not directly or indirectly exaggerate the environmental role of the object of promotion or the benefits that consumers could receive.
- No double interpretation or blurring of meaning is allowed – it is necessary to specify the useful properties of such products;
- If a claim is made about the advantages of a marketing product, compared to competitors, this claim must be substantiated.