Dyson challenges 'misleading' EU labelling policy
10:28am Friday 11th October 2013 in Latest News
Manufacturer Dyson is mounting a legal challenge against the EU's labelling policy for vacuum cleaners, saying it gives a misleading impression of the firm's products.
Entrepreneur Sir James Dyson, the founder of the Malmesbury-based company, said the EU's energy efficiency ratings were based on dust-free lab conditions, favouring "old-fashioned technology".
He said home performance was "very different to that in the laboratory".
Sir James has pioneered the bagless vacuum cleaner.
From September 2014, all vacuum cleaners sold in the EU will be rated according to their performance and energy efficiency, in an effort to carbon emissions and save energy.
It wants buyers to take the environment into consideration when they are buying household appliances.
Dyson said it had launched a judicial review at the European General Court in Luxembourg, because it felt the rating system would mislead people looking to buy a new vacuum cleaner.
"The regulations stipulate that vacuums should be tested in laboratory conditions: empty and with no dust," said the firm.
"This does not simulate real-life conditions and is not representative of the view of testing and standards bodies across Europe."
Dyson said its bagless design meant that its cleaners did not clog with dust and therefore wasted less energy.
It also said the EU's tests did not take into account the cost, "on both the pocket and the planet", of replacement bags and filters for older types of vacuum cleaner.
"Dyson fully supports the ambition to make the environmental impact of a machine easier to understand," said a spokesman for the firm. "However, we are challenging aspects of the label because it will mislead consumers - notably the fact that the machines are tested in lab conditions free of dust, and the fact that environmentally damaging and costly consumables are not considered."
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