With TCO Certified Accepted Substance List, chemical suppliers are required to share the information they have. Failing to do so leads to a business disadvantage when the chemical is excluded from TCO Certified Accepted Substance List and cannot be used in certified products. With this approach, our idea is to incentivize transparency by connecting information sharing with business opportunity.
At first, our push for greater transparency was a somewhat confronting challenge and required a new mindset from industry. We met with some resistance from chemical companies, as information on ingredients and hazards was typically treated as confidential. What caused the shift with major chemical suppliers was when their clients, the IT brand owners, used the criteria in TCO Certified as leverage to bring about a new level of transparency around the chemicals used in certified products. Industry began to see the benefits of a shared list that helps them make more informed judgements on chemical use. The transparent approach lowers the brand owner’s risk of expensive product recalls or costly transitions to another chemical supplier, should a substance become restricted by legislation.