Target to rate products on ingredients and environmental impact

MINNEAPOLIS - Minnesota-based Target is rolling out a ratings system that may get your attention.

It targets toxic chemicals and environmental impact.

It's called the Target Sustainable Product Standard.

Target will be looking at what ingredients are in the products on its shelves and the environmental impact of those products and then it will rate them, hoping to provide greater transparency for customers.

The focus will be on personal care and beauty products, baby care products and household cleaners.

Starting this month, an article on the company website says Target will collect information from vendors of 7500 products and then evaluate that info, assigning each product a score, up to a top score of 100 points.

Starting in 2014, Target will start rating cosmetics as well.

Kathleen Schuler, co-director of the Healthy Legacy Coalition, is encouraged. She said with Target being a top retailer, it can push the country toward safer chemistry in products.

"They sell a variety of products and it's a huge supply chain. But the fact that they're starting this process and getting it in the works and letting their suppliers know they're concerned about certain chemicals is really significant," Schuler said.

Schuler said Walmart has been doing something similar for about a decade.

She says the Target program, which has been in development for a couple years, looks as if it could have an even bigger impact.

So when will consumers get a peek?

A Target spokesperson said the company is gathering data and developing its ratings first. It will then decide when and how to communicate it all to customers.


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