Get Cradle to Cradle Certified®: What to know about the transition from Version 3.1 to 4.0

As of July 1, 2021, the Cradle to Cradle Certified® Products Program has begun to roll out the transition from the Cradle to Cradle Certified Product Standard Version 3.1 to Version 4.0. With the Version 3.1 deadline approaching, along with the growing popularity of Amazon’s Climate Pledge Friendly program, we encourage our clients to take advantage of this opportunity and submit applications by year-end. As assessors, we also want to ensure that new and existing clients are well-informed about the differences between these standards and how we can best collaborate to help you achieve Cradle to Cradle certification for your products. 

For current Version 3.1 certification holders, December 31, 2023 marks the deadline to submit applications and assessment summary forms for products to be assessed and certified under the Version 3.1 standard. We encourage our clients to continue their Cradle to Cradle momentum and dedication to circularity by submitting these forms by year-end.

  • Products assessed in 2023 under version 3.1 will achieve valid certifications lasting two years.
  • Version 3.1 recertifications will be accepted until December 31, 2024.
  • All potential new certification holders are now required to submit under Version 4.0. 

According to the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute, “the Cradle to Cradle Certified​®​ Product Standard Version 4.0 is the most ambitious and actionable standard yet for designing and making products today that enable a healthy, equitable and sustainable future.” 

What are the key differences between Version 3.1 and Version 4.0?

Version 4.0:

  • Certificates will be valid for three years instead of two
  • New frameworks for Product Circularity and Social Fairness that define global best practices
  • More rigorous requirements in Clean Air & Climate Protection that promote urgent action to address climate change
  • Expanded requirements in Water & Soil Stewardship to ensure clean water and healthy soils are available to people and all other organisms
  • Improved alignment of Material Health requirements with leading chemical regulations and other standards, including a new Restricted Substances List

Consumer products that have achieved Cradle to Cradle certification can also be marked with a Climate Pledge Friendly badge on Amazon. Amazon’s Climate Pledge Friendly program is a partnership between the e-commerce site and third-party sustainability certifications, as well as Amazon’s own certifications, providing customers with sustainable product options. This achievement also ensures that these products are listed on the first page of the e-commerce website. According to customer trends on Amazon, after a product earns a Climate Pledge Friendly badge, their average page views are expected to increase by 10%. In 2020 alone, over 300 million Climate Pledge Friendly products were sold. 

For more information about the transition to Version 4.0 and how it was developed from the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute, click here

For more information on Amazon’s Climate Pledge Friendly badge, click here

For more information on how to get certified with MBDC, click here