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Marshalls Making Sense Of Sustainability In The Hard Landscaping Industry

Savvy consumers are now demanding more information before making a buying decision. But how do you know that what you’re buying is truly carbon neutral, has a low carbon footprint or is environmentally friendly?

Marshalls is the UK’s leading hard landscaping company and has today announced the signing of its agreement with the Carbon Trust to carbon label its domestic products.

Carbon footprinting of products is not new, but in the landscaping industry it was unknown until Marshalls launched its Carbon Calculator in January 2007. Today’s announcement confirms Marshalls will use the standard developed by the Carbon Trust1, to calculate the embodied carbon emissions of its domestic product range and to reduce product carbon emissions while working with the Carbon Trust to explore the best way to communicate this information to our consumers. This initiative goes a long way to reinforce Marshalls’ position as market leader. This commitment to carbon labelling will allow gardeners, designers and builders alike to be informed about the product they are buying.

Chris Harrop, Group Marketing Director, says: “Cynics tend to think that it’s too difficult to carbon label because of the work that’s needed to look at manufacture and supply chains and the confusion over what to do about the carbon footprinting of products used for a garden or driveway project. But with the work we’ve been doing, we’re confident that carbon labelling is not only possible in the landscaping industry, it is imperative. Consumers have a right to know the impact of their buying decisions.”

Marshalls became the first company in the hard landscaping industry to join the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) covering its imported natural stone. The ETI is a unique organisation that brings together global companies, trade unions and NGOs, with the focus on developing practical solutions to ethical trade that deliver concrete benefits for workers. The ETI aims to improve the lives of workers in global supply chains by promoting responsible corporate practice that supports this goal.

Leading the way in the hard landscaping industry, Marshalls held the industry’s first Sustainability Summit at Pines Calyx in November 2006, with a follow up Summit in April 2007 gathering leaders in the fields of sustainability, garden design, environmental conscious building, green guides and professional associations. Both Summits were organised in response to the growing awareness of climate change and ethical sourcing – in particular imported Indian natural sandstone, which is arriving in the UK often from highly unethical sources.

The carbon calculator can be found on the Marshalls for Sustainable Landscapes website, which contains detailed information about the all aspects of this large-scale sustainability programme. Visit for more information.