Fresenius Medical Care dialysis products awarded Nordic Ecolabel
17 December 2008
Fresenius Medical Care has been awarded a Nordic Ecolable license for
its peritoneal dialysis bags. The first Ecolabelling of its kind in the
world, the dialysis Ecolabel applies to peritoneal dialysis bags and
disposables used both in hospitals and in homes.
“We are pleased to be the first healthcare company with Ecolabelled
products on the market. Reducing the negative impact on the environment
has always been in the forefront in our company. We started in the
nineties when PVC was a much discussed topic. It has now resurfaced,
which shows how important this issue is,” said Fredrik Gustafsson,
Managing Director of Fresenius Medical Care in Sweden.
Ecolabelled peritoneal dialysis and intravenous infusion treatment
bags have a number of environmental benefits. Most dialysis bags are
made from PVC which includes harmful phthalates. A Nordic Ecolabelled
dialysis bag is free of PVC, endocrine disruptors, persistent,
bioaccumulative and toxic substances.
Use of Ecolabelled products could reduce the use of phthalates in the
Nordic region by approximately 100 tonnes. Some phthalates, used as
softeners for plastics, are believed to negatively affect the
reproductive ability of both humans and animals.
“The healthcare sector is critically important to the goal of reducing
environmental impact. Many disposable products are used in hospitals but
also in patients’ homes. To Ecolabel these products makes it easier for
healthcare procurement staff to select the best products for the
environment,” said Cecilia Ehrenborg Williams, Business to Business
Manager, Nordic Ecolabel.
The Ecolabel covers the entire product packaging material: the dialysis
bag, its tubes or other accessories, and the outer-packaging it comes
in. The Nordic Ecolabel goes beyond demonstrating that a product has a
low environmental impact. It also guarantees that the manufacturing
processes and quality standards for Ecolabelled products are state of
Since these products are disposable, they generate an excessive
amount of waste. These Ecolabelled dialysis bags generate less waste
than traditional bags with the added bonus of being less hazardous to
both people and the environment.
In addition to reducing phthalate exposure to the human body, waste
generation could be reduced by approximately one fifth compared with
other PVC bags and without the toxic substances that are otherwise
deposited with the trash. This reduction in waste material is a
climate-related aspect since less fuel is used in the transportation and
less energy is needed to dispose of these bags.
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