§ Mr. Tredinnick
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he proposes to introduce a green label scheme for products which are friendly to the environment; and what assessment he has made of the extent to which such a scheme would encourage consumers to buy such products and organically grown food.
§ Mrs. Virginia Bottomley
We have no present plans to introduce a national scheme of environmental labelling, although we are keeping the idea under review in the light of views expressed by consumers, retailers and producers. We welcome efforts by producers and retailers to give consumers information about the environmental effect of products. The impact of any national scheme on consumers' purchasing decisions would depend, among other things, on its scope. A system of environmental labeling—the Blue Angel scheme—has operated in the Federal Republic of Germany since 1978, but food products are excluded from its scope. As for organically grown food, the United Kingdom Register of Organic Food Standards, set up at the instigation of my right hon. Friend the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, announced on 2 May national standards and a national symbol relating to the production of organic foods.