Updated on February 13, 2020
In 2018 the UTZ label appeared on more than 15,000 products across 130 countries helping brands to demonstrate their commitment to sustainable sourcing. Everyone should be able to trust the UTZ label, so we have clear rules for how it can be used.
The UTZ label shows consumers that their purchase is supporting sustainable farming and provides independent back up to a brand’s sustainability story. We review 45 labeling requests every day and work with our members to make sure the UTZ label is always used correctly. This is key to the credibility of our program.
What is UTZ labeling and do I have to use it?
UTZ on-pack labeling is actually made up of three different components – the UTZ label itself, a short claim about the used traceability level and a web link to utz.org or to information about the cooperation with UTZ on the brand’s own website.
Only companies purchasing certified products can use the UTZ label but not all choose to do so. Using the logo is not compulsory and some brands decide it’s not the right way for them to communicate their commitment to sustainable sourcing.
Using the right label for your product
If you do use the UTZ label you have to follow some simple rules. For example, the label can go anywhere on your packaging but it has a minimum size and can never be bigger than your brand’s own logo.
It’s important that brands use the right claim for their products. Different claims are used depending on the traceability level. For example, products with mass balance cocoa will have a different claim than products for which segregated cocoa has been used. It’s important to be transparent that with mass balance the certified cocoa may not be in the actual product you’re buying.
Consult our online labeling assistant to get direct advice on which label and text claim you can use on your products. Simple, quick and efficient!
Get your label approved in three steps
All products carrying the UTZ label must be approved by us before they are printed. The good news is that getting your labeling approved can be done easily online and there’s no cost involved.
- Get your login details for one of the UTZ traceability systems: MultiTrace (for coffee and hazelnut) or the Good Inside Portal (for cocoa and tea),
- Go to the labeling approval section and select the option to submit a new labeling request. You’ll need to provide us with some information about the product(s) and then upload your artwork;
- Submit your approval request and we’ll get back to you within five working days.
We review every piece of artwork submitted and will let you know if any changes are needed. As soon as your artwork is approved (and the manufacturer is already UTZ certified), you can download the official approval letter and share it with the auditor during your UTZ audit.
Each approval is valid for a year. If you’re still using the same artwork a year later, just let us know by simply extending the approval online.
Mutual recognition on claim level for cocoa, tea and hazelnut (coffee to follow soon!)
As of July 1, 2019 mutual recognition on claim level is available for our cocoa, tea and hazelnut programs (coffee, vanilla and herbal infusions to follow from July 1, 2020). This means that companies at the end of the supply chain can source Rainforest Alliance Certified or UTZ certified ingredients – or a mixture of both – and then use either the Rainforest Alliance Certified seal or UTZ label on pack, in accordance with the labeling rules of the respective program. This allows our partner companies to make decisions on which seal creates the most value for their brand.
“UTZ part of the Rainforest Alliance” corporate logo
To support companies gradually transition from UTZ to the Rainforest Alliance, we have made a temporary corporate logo available. Companies can use this in their off-pack communication. This helps you raise awareness on the fact that the UTZ program is now part of the Rainforest Alliance. Check our logos page for more info and user guidelines.
Find out more
You can get more information about UTZ labeling on the UTZ Academy Online. Click here to access our free training session and select ‘Log in as a guest’. You can also read our Labeling and Trademark Policy for information about using the UTZ logo and sustainability claims.