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Greenwash machine pops up in London

The installation took place to remind consumers of being wary of green claims during sales periods

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Canopey was founded by Greenpeace campaigner Thomas Panton to help make buying better

Sustainable product platform, Canopey, recently created a giant washing machine to encourage shoppers to examine green claims made by companies during sales times.

Greenwashing has become a consistent issue from advertisers and companies especially regarding green claims linked to products like paper and textiles.

The machine, named Greenwash 3000, was erected at Greenwich Park on Black Friday to demonstrate how heavily some brands engage in deceptive advertising.

The interactive machine was surrounded by wash baskets with dirty clothes labelled with some of the worst culprits for eco claims.

A large part of the campaign is in response to fast fashion, a part of the garment industry which has received significant criticism in recent years from machine manufacturers including Kornit Digital, which has used its platform to advocate for a more circular economy. 

Thomas Panton, chief executive officer of Canopey, says: “Fast fashion fraudsters and dodgy high street retailers are trying to capitalise on sustainability ethics and mislead with bogus green claims.

"It's time to fight back and raise awareness of how they're using the Greenwashing Machine to clean their dirty laundry and create a good 'green' appearance, even if underneath the story is very different. 

Panton suggests to consumers to look out for vague language around statements as well as low-quality materials and items that can’t be reused.

“Shoppers should be able to shop their values without worrying about the spin, but as it stands it's way too hard to trust these untrue claims,” says Panton. 

The project came about after a new study by Canopey which found 68% of Brits feel angry that retailers and brands could be misleading them.

Research found that adults over 55 were least likely to believe green claims while those 18 to 24 were far more trusting and likely to buy something based on sustainability.

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