A Future-Fit Business ensures all of the products it offers are completely benign to people and nature, both during use and (in the case of physical goods) as a result of their post-use processing.
What this goal means
Although many products could be used in ways that harm people or the environment, the focus here is on three areas: goods that directly cause harm; goods that cause harm as an unavoidable consequence of their use; and services whose use could reasonably be expected to cause harm, by instilling or reinforcing behaviours that undermine society’s progress to future-fitness.
With respect to physical goods, a Future-Fit company ensures that any goods it provides do not cause physical degradation to the environment or physical harm to people, and that they do not contain substances that physically or chemically disrupt the health of people, organisms and ecosystems when used as intended or when processed at their end of life. This includes revenue-generating products, any packaging or other materials distributed to customers, along with any materials used in the delivery of products.
These requirements cover both final products designed for end users, and interim goods which are incorporated or processed into final products by other companies.
To be Future-Fit a company must:
- Ensure that the goods and services it sells are not likely to cause harm to people or the environment, when used as intended;
- Know every intentionally added substance in its physical goods; and
- Ensure that those goods do not contain any substances of concern.
Why this goal is needed...
We are continuously introducing novel substances into circulation.
An estimated 2,000 chemicals are introduced every year for use in everyday items including food, personal care products and prescription drugs. The effects of many of these chemicals remain unknown.
A large number of potentially harmful substances are being used that may soon be subject to restrictions.
At the time of publishing, there are more than 1,100 companies in the EU and USA that produce or import hazardous chemicals that are likely to be banned or restricted soon.