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Amazon launches the sustainable brand Amazon Aware

The online commerce giant unveiled Amazon Aware, a new sustainable brand of affordable, carbon neutral fashion, home and beauty. “Customers want to shop in a more aware way; we want to make it easier”, they explain on the site. “Amazon Aware is an essential line for everyday wear, home, beauty and more, all with third-party certifications featured in our Climate Pledge Friendly program”.

Why sustainable? The products are certified as “zero emissions”. Climate Partner, a company compliant with the GHG (Greenhouse Gas) protocol, calculates the carbon footprint considering the emissions over the life cycle of the product.

In support of its commitment to sustainability, to ward off suspicions of greenwashing, there are 32 certifications that Amazon brings out:
  • Blusign
  • Carbon Free
  • Carbon Neutral
  • Carbon Trust
  • Carbon Neutral by SCSCertified Animal Welfare Approved
  • Climate neutral by ClimatePartner
  • Compact by Design
  • Cradle to Cradle Certified
  • ECOLOGO
  • ENERGY STAR
  • EPEAT
  • EWG Verified
  • Fairtrade International
  • Fair for Life
  • The Forest Stewardship Council
  • GOTS
  • Global Recycled Standard
  • Green Seal
  • Higg Index Materials
  • Made in Green by Oeko-Tex
  • MADE SAFE
  • Organic Content Standard 100
  • Organic Content Standard Blended Rainforest Alliance’s
  • Recycled Claim Standard 100
  • Recycled Claim Standard Blended
  • Reducing CO2
  • Regenerative Organic Certified
  • Responsible Wool Standard
  • U.S. EPA Safer Choice
  • USDA Organic
The offer

You can select men’s/women’s clothing, body and hair products, household products, bedroom and bathroom items, basic items, organic or recycled material products such as polyester jacket or kitchen paper rolls.

The fashion section includes dresses, outerwear, loungewear and everyday basics in sizes XXS to 7XL. Prices vary according to size, for example the recycled polyester jacket costs between 32 and 55 euros, the high-necked top 15-24 euros, the multi-pocket shirt 27-37 euros, the jeans 39-43 euros, the sweatshirt 28-37 euros. At the moment there are 22 articles of clothing for women and 12 for men.

All items are under 55 euros, most are priced between 20 and 40 euros.
True commitment or greenwashing?

This is the question that may arise, because still there are:

  • the question of the treatment of its workers
  • sales (and consumption) in large numbers
  • and the kind of whole sea of products sold on the platform. Amazon Aware is a drop.

We asked, through our Instagram channel, what readers think, sensitive to sustainability issues. Read what those who work for more responsible consumption answered.

Benedetta, co-founder of the sustainable e-commerce WHATaECO:  “I would never buy an Amazon Aware product. Maybe I sound radical, but that’s the same reason I wouldn’t eat a vegan sandwich at Burger King or buy solid shampoo at the grocery store. There are multinationals that have grown rich for years (and continue to do so), at the expense of workers, the environment and healthy market growth. If for many I know that these actions represent ‘a step forward’, a ‘way to send the message to more people’, for me it is only greenwashing, which tries to collect consensus and money even from that part of consumers who would never buy from Amazon or Burger King. There are many realities that are really born on the values of ethics and sustainability. Personally, I strongly believe in supporting these and not falling into the green trap of the giants of consumerism”.

 

Manuela, Officina Sartoriale Creativa: “I think they are trying to grab that slice of the market that hasn’t bought anything from Amazon yet and was not willing to do so. I will not buy from Amazon Aware. There are many realities that base their entire vision and mission for this purpose, I believe that Amazon should not be part of it. By doing so, it seems that Amazon also clears this of being able to make sustainable by anyone, with the money by paying the best of professionals who make ad hoc campaigns. It penalizes the little ones, who really invest all their time, their work to give true value and put their face to it. Amazon no, it only takes the money and this becomes the umpteenth, forgive me the Frenchism, taking the piss”.

 

Valeria, Valeria Minussi Art: “I have some doubts that it is truly sustainable, only for the fact that it is reachable in every corner of the world it is not anymore. It is difficult to think of a sustainable multinational. They can put all the labels in the world, but I don’t think it is in the way I mean, that is, almost zero kilometers or be for a few and at a fair price. You don’t sell me a home item for € 1 or a shirt for € 10! Not to mention the materials and processes, which most likely will not be as ecological as they say. In my work, I recycle materials to create art and it’s not always easy. I am trying to be as sustainable as possible, but I continue to struggle with the possible and the feasible to keep my philosophy on recycling. I imagine that for a large multinational the problem does not arise as something to be supported”.

 

Debora, Atelier Biologico: “Of the latest Amazon launch I think the same as all the other brands that pretend to be sustainable but then in the meantime… What a joy to dress all the same! Yes, because when the last small brand closes, this will be the end we will end up. And how does this garment come to me? By ship, plane or truck? Who makes it? Are we sure that they are treated with excellent economic and health conditions? Without forgetting that for such low prices something doesn’t add up. I wonder if they only produce the items ordered. For me it leaves the time it finds, but the problem is that the rest of the world will believe it. Little by little we will all depend on Amazon, there is also Amazon Fresh which replaces the supermarkets”.

By doing a search online, the media articles generally tell the news of the launch of Amazon Aware in a positive way, welcoming the introduction of the new brand, with no reference to greenwashing.

We launched a survey in Instagram stories to understand what the audience thinks: “Will you buy Aware on Amazon?”. 92% said they won’t. The 32 certifications do not seem to ensure exemption from the suspicion of greenwashing, especially among people who are more attentive to sustainable and responsible consumption.

 

Will it work instead with those new to the world of sustainability or approaching for the first time? Amazon tests the news before deciding whether to expand a business area. It will probably not hesitate to change course if this new brand does not show positive results and development potential, while it will continue if it catches on.

 

 

 

Photo: Amazon Aware

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