GREEN BRANDS is an international, independent and autonomous brand evaluation organization dedicated to the promotion of environmental sustainability, with headquarters based in Veitsbronn (near Nuremberg) in Germany and offices in Hamburg, Vienna (Austria), Basel (Schwitzerland), Prague (Czech Republic), Budapest (Hungary)
GREEN BRANDS awards ecologically sustainable brands and the GREEN BRANDS seal of approval in international cooperation with independent institutions and societies in the fields of environmental/climate protection and sustainability as well as with market and opinion research institutes.
The award honors “green” brands of daily life that respond to the increasing awareness of the population for more sustainability, environmental protection and healthy lifestyles or are oriented in this way right from the start.
GREEN BRANDS thus rewards the brands’ commitment to climate protection, sustainability and ecological responsibility in a unique way.
Sparked by a successful career in international brand-marketing, coupled with an eco-conscious upbringing, Norbert Lux founded GREEN BRANDS.
Born in 1956, Lux, who is “half Austrian”, was raised in Nuremberg by nature-loving Austrian parents. The values his parents instilled in him — importance of whole organic foods, respect for creation — led him to dedicate his life to sustainability and the preservation of our environment.
After many adventures to the “other side” of the world, Lux became one of the first authors of travel guides for Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii, and other exotic locales. Experiencing the glory of nature on a global level played a vital role in the “contemplation” to come. Inevitably, his hobby became his profession when Lux was hired to organize tours throughout Austria, Germany, Australia, and the South Seas.
However, while raising his four children in the beautiful Franconian countryside, a dramatic shift in the provisions on climate and environmental protection came into play– something Norbert Lux´ father had predicted in 1970 – and Lux re-focused his attention to this issue. A crisis is also always the opportunity to take up new challenges!
So, after the global tourism crisis (9-11, SARS virus, and the 2003 war in Iraq ) took its toll on Lux professionally, he went to work in brand marketing for the international organization Superbrands, where he was charged with awarding the greatest brands in both Germany and Austria.
Ultimately, in 2007, Lux’s experience in brand marketing, coupled with his eco-philosophies, led him to create GREEN BRANDS. But, this entailed several consequences! Not only good friends (first and foremost Charlotte Wehrfritz from Erlangen and Kelly Newton-Wordsworth, Australian singer, songwriter, environmental activist and biodynamic farmer) and colleagues, but representatives of the honored Superbrands, admonished Lux for choosing to not simply promote the “biggest and best” brands but to promote any company, big or small, that was serious about sustainability and environmental protection.
(“Dieser Weg wird kein leichter sein…“ Xavier Naidoo)
The first GREEN BRANDS validation process took place in Austria in March of 2011. However, it took four years and countless interviews, investigations, and compliance hearings to bring ourselves to the point where we are today.
One thing was absolutely clear from the start: Only through combined expertise and the courage of our convictions would it be possible to create a respectable and transparent validation process. One that can, and will, sustain. One, that is light-years away from the infamous green-washing campaigns, which we all have had enough of.
Last, but certainly not least, none of this would be possible without the extraordinary support from our partners in Austria. – Well, no coincidence! – Rather proof that the small Republic of Austria can achieve great things! ALLPLAN/ClimatePartner Austria; SERI (Sustainable Europe Research Institute); and the highly-qualified jury members all ensure that the GREEN BRANDS validation process for ecologically sustainable companies lives up to its reputation.
The dream of Norbert Lux to establish an international three-stage validation process for ecologically sustainably companies — which is unique worldwide — is turning into reality: Negotiations with potential partners in several countries (as far as Singapore, Indonesia, and Hong Kong) are currently taking place. However, no “act-fast-now” decisions are to endanger the GREEN BRANDS ideal. It is infinitely more important to us that we adhere to our principles than making an imprudent partnership that may reduce the GREEN BRANDS philosophy to a farce.
Sustainable Europe Research Institute, Vienna. Scientific support and development of criteria catalogues and the “Green Brands Index” for validation.
One of the largest market research institutes in the world supports GREEN BRANDS with regard to the nomination process by providing representative market studies of the participating countries.
INa of the Berlin School of Economics and Law (Institut für Nachhaltigkeit der Hochschule für Wirtschaft und Recht Berlin) Combination of research and teaching activities at the Berlin School of Economics and Law regarding Sustainable Science and Sustainable Economics. Collaboration with regard to the development of the validation process and the criteria for the membership in the jury.
Society for Technical Services and Environmental Management, Vienna. Development of the criteria catalogues and conducting of validation.