News Analysis

Trust, but Verify: How to Get the Most from Transparency Docs

Third-party verification of material ingredient declarations is a growing trend. Is it growing fast enough?

Building professionals asked for it. And they got it: lots and lots of health product declarations (HPDs) and Declare labels, which are two of the most popular ways to release information about building product ingredients and toxicity. Now what?

Trusting the information found in a self-declared document is dicey. Sometimes one product brand reveals toxic contents while another in the same product category does not. Does this mean the cleaner-looking brand doesn’t actually have the hazard? Not necessarily. Some HPDs list virtually no product contents because almost everything in the product is proprietary (not a problem with Declare labels, which only allow 1% of ingredients to be proprietary). Some have fewer ingredients disclosed than the legally required safety data sheet (SDS). Quality assurance is spotty at best. If only there were some way to guarantee that what’s on the HPD or Declare label is thorough, honest, and follows all the rules.

Published May 3, 2021

Melton, P. (2021, April 21). Trust, but Verify: How to Get the Most from Transparency Docs. Retrieved from