Canada’s Competition Bureau Opens Greenwashing Investigation of Lululemon


Canada’s competition bureau has opened an investigation into Lululemon’s sustainability marketing, advancing a complaint lodged by climate-advocacy group against the Vancouver-based activewear brand.

In February, had asked the agency, which polices practices such as deceptive advertising, to investigate whether Lululemon’s “Be Planet” messaging misled consumers. It alleged the brand benefitted from a “carefully constructed image of environmental sustainability and wellness” that conflicted with its fast-growing emissions. Lululemon said at the time it remained committed to its decarbonisation plan.

Lululemon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Advocacy groups have used greenwashing investigations by Canada’s competition bureau to their advantage in the past. In 2022, following an investigation based on a complaint by environmental law organisation Ecojustice, the bureau hit coffee maker Keurig with a fine of CA$3 million ($2.2 million) for misleading claims about the recyclability of its single-use coffee pods. Shell abandoned a campaign centred on its use of carbon offsets earlier this year after Greenpeace asked the bureau to examine its claims.

Corporate greenwashing has become a priority for Canada’s competition bureau. In March, the agency’s commissioner, Matthew Boswell, asked Canada’s government for more power to fight the problem.

Learn more:

Can Fashion Stop Greenwashing?

Big brands are changing the way they talk about sustainability following a regulatory crackdown in Europe. But exactly how companies should be required to substantiate their eco-marketing claims remains hotly debated.

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