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What is a Declare label and how is it used?

A Declare label is a product transparency label that provides information about the environmental and health attributes of building products. It is a voluntary program initiated by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) and is used to promote transparency and sustainability in the building industry.

The Declare label is typically used for building products such as finishes, coatings, adhesives, insulation, and other construction materials. It provides information on the ingredients and sourcing of the product, as well as any environmental certifications or third-party verifications it has obtained. The label is designed to help architects, builders, and consumers make informed decisions about the sustainability and health impacts of building products they are considering using or specifying in their projects.

The Declare label uses a simple Red List approach, which identifies chemicals of concern that are known to have negative impacts on human health or the environment. Manufacturers are required to disclose all intentionally added ingredients in their products and indicate if any of the Red List chemicals are present. Additionally, the Declare label also requires information on the manufacturer's supply chain and the end-of-life options for the product, such as recyclability or compost ability.

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Interior WAFFLE features matching external products at Valley Metro, Fortitude Valley QLD

As an example, SUPAWOOD’s SUPAMETAL range of Panels, Slats, Beams and Blades that are manufactured using 99% recyclable aluminium contain zero Red List chemicals; additionally, no WELL listed chemicals are used. Many industry players don’t realise that 90% of the aluminium used in the building industry is recycled after demolition and can be recycled indefinitely if uncontaminated. When aluminium building products are recycled there is a saving of energy of 95% compared to the production of new aluminium, even when the cost of collection, separation and recycling are considered.

SUPAWOOD uses a range of powder coats to finish our SUPAMETAL range and these also contain no Red List or WELL listed chemicals. With 99% recyclable materials, SUPAMETAL represents Best in Class.

Why is Declare important?

By using Declare labelled products, architects, builders, and consumers can make more informed choices to support sustainable and healthy building practices. The label promotes transparency and accountability in the building industry, encouraging manufacturers to develop products that are environmentally responsible and healthier for people.

Declare labels for building products are not mandatory or widely sought by government bodies or architects as yet in Australia. However, there has been growing interest and awareness about sustainable and environmentally friendly building practices in Australia, and Declare labels are being used voluntarily by some architects, designers, and builders who prioritize transparency and sustainability for their clients. This is particularly important to the broader community when considering public projects - How are my tax dollars being spent?

While Declare labels are not yet mandated or widely sought by government bodies in Australia, there are other sustainability certifications and labelling schemes that are recognized and used in the construction industry, such as Green Star, and NABERS which are widely recognized sustainability rating system for commercial buildings in Australia.

As part of our Sustainable Business Model, SUPAWOOD meets all Declare, Green Star and NABERS requirements in our day-to-day transparent collaboration with Design and Building professionals. Simply put, we don’t have a non-sustainable range on offer. We meet all criteria set down and supply this information as a matter of course.

It's important to note that regulations and requirements related to building products and sustainability certifications can change over time, and it's best to consult with local authorities, architects, and industry professionals for the most up-to-date information on the use of Declare labels or other sustainability certifications in Australia.

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UNSW CoFA Block D, Paddington NSW showcases Declare. rated external products, and matching interior finishes.

Authenticity

The Building Code Board of Australia has stated the number one risk facing the Australian Building Industry is product substitution, number two being fraudulent or misleading product certification. So how do I know if a manufacturer’s product really is Declare?

A Declare label typically states the following information:

1. Product Name: The name or brand of the building product.

2. Manufacturer: The name of the company that manufactures the product.

3. Ingredients: A list of all the ingredients or materials used in the product, including their chemical names and quantities. This is to ensure transparency and provide information about the composition of the product.

4. Red List Status: The Declare label may also state whether the product contains any Red List chemicals, which are substances that are known to be harmful to human health or the environment and are to be avoided in sustainable building projects.

5. Environmental Performance: The label may provide information about the product's environmental performance, such as its carbon footprint, recycled content, and potential for renewable energy use.

6. Authenticity: The Declare label may include a QR code or a unique identifier that can be used to verify the authenticity of the label. This allows consumers or building professionals to verify if the label is genuine and not counterfeit.

 

To determine if a Declare label is authentic, you can follow these steps:

1. Check the Source: Ensure that the label is obtained from a reliable and authorized source, such as the manufacturer's official website or a reputable sustainability certification organization.

2. Verify the QR Code or Unique Identifier: Scan the QR code or enter the unique identifier provided on the label into the manufacturer's or certification organization's website to verify the authenticity of the label.

3. Cross-Reference Information: Cross-reference the information on the label, such as product name, manufacturer, and ingredients, with the information available on the manufacturer's website or other reputable sources to ensure consistency and accuracy.

4. Contact the Manufacturer or Certification Organization: If you have any doubts or concerns about the authenticity of a Declare label, you can contact the manufacturer or the certification organization directly to seek verification.

It's important to ensure that the Declare label is authentic and reliable to make informed decisions about the environmental performance and sustainability of building products in Australia.

So, in summary, Declare is a program that provides a framework for manufacturers to disclose information about the ingredients and environmental impact of their building products. It is aimed at promoting healthier and more sustainable building practices by encouraging transparency and accountability in the construction industry.

 

For more information, or to answer any further questions, please reach out to SUPAWOOD's National Specification Manager, Richard Hardwick. [email protected]

+61 427 573 024

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