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What's GRS Certificate?


GRS stands for Global Recycling Standard, it applies to the companies which hold a statement describing the content of recycled raw materials in their final products. It is a global voluntary and comprehensive product standard that sets requirements for recycling content, chain of custody, social and environmental practices, and chemical use restrictions for third-party certification.

Thus, the GRS certificate sets requirements for third-party certification of the following. 

Recycled Content:


GRS certifies those companies which have products containing at least 20% of recycled materials. It also accepts pre-consumer and post-consumer materials. Pre-consumer materials come from the heap of waste during the manufacturing process. In contrast, post-consumer materials come from households. They are also generated through industrial, commercial, and institutional uses when the product’s utility comes to an end and runs out of its intended purpose.


Chain of custody:


Each production phase is needed to be certified. It begins with the recycling stage and ends with the last seller when the final b2b transaction occurs. The chain of custody helps verify the recycled materials, and it is done without traceability of the supply chain.

Social and Environmental practices:


Bodies that are programmed as the third party must maintain strict environmental and social needs.


Chemical restrictions:


GRS forbids the use of dangerous chemicals under the processing of GRS products. And it has the following requirements:

     1. Elimination of harmful chemicals based on REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation, and restriction of Chemicals)

     2. Elimination of substances that do not follow the list of manufacturer’s restricted substance under ZDHC

     3. Elimination of substances or mixtures which come under particular threat codes and risk phrases.

What are the Objectives of a GRS Certificate?

The basic purpose of a GRS certificate is to create a healthy and eco-friendly environment around. Besides, GRS Certificate also provides some fair policies related to manufacturing and distributing. Here are a few listed:

    a. To trace recycled materials during the manufacturing process

    b. To offer a tool to customers, including brands and consumers, for making smart decisions

    c. To prevent harmful effects of production to both people and the environment

    d. To ensure that materials in the final product are recycled.

    e. To innovate ideas in resolving quality issues while using recycled materials.

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The overall goal of GRS

To increase the use of recyclable materials in products, reduce and eliminate the damage to the environment caused by production.


GRS certification standards is to prove that the factory is able to produce recyclable products.

Therefore, GRS concerns:

    1. Product traceability

    2. Social Responsibility

    3. Environmental protection

If you want to import recycled products from Chinese suppliers which are GRS certified, the following info can help you.

First of all, you should check whether the GRS-certified suppliers you are contacting have CS. Here, CS stands for Scope Certificate that verifies if the supplier has a GRS certificate or is qualified to deliver goods according to the GRS standard. But you should not take the GRS scope certificate at face value.

Look supplier's name and supplying product site closely on the scope certificate.  Also, do not forget to review the processing steps or activities that need to be corresponding to the services. Keep in mind that many factories work with multiple suppliers. These factories can provide scope certificates owned by other suppliers, which are not theirs.

If you don't find the site's name that provides a certificate in the list of approved GRS certification bodies, don't fool yourself. The certificate is not valid.  Also, consider the date of issuing the scope certificate. And confirm whether it is valid as the GRS scope certificate expires within a year.  Now you need one more task to do is to check the version of the certificate. Is it GRS 4.0? If so, that's fine. It is the latest version of the scope certificate.

If the factory is GRS certified, they are available to print Renewable/Recyclable logo on product, like below:

recycled products.png

And GRS logo on package, like below:

recycled phone case.jpg

But, some of our clients asked, “how should I prove to my clients that these products are using recycled materials? ”


Now it's time to talk about TC – Transaction Certificate.

What is a TC transaction certificate?

The TC transaction certificate is a certificate used to confirm that the produced and traded products comply with the corresponding rules.


Why do you need TC?

TC is to prove that your order or the product contains recyclable substances, it will show both of your company and your supplier's and order product info in this TC so that you can show your clients to prove your product contains recyclable materials.


You don't need to worry about applying for TC, because only the factory can apply for it and you just need to tell them that you need a TC and assist them if needed.

One more thing you need to understand that not every supplier can apply TC, it requires a very specific and complicated process. Herewith there are some conditions for the manufacturers to apply for TC trading certificate:

1. The supplier must pass the GRS certificate and obtain the TC transaction certificate

2. Provide supplier's TC transaction certificate and raw material purchase invoice

    1) Invoice requirements:

    a. The product name of the invoice must match the product name you applied for

    b. The weight on the invoice must be greater than or equal to the weight you applied for


    2) Requirements for raw material bills

    a. The delivery date of the raw materials must be earlier than your own delivery date

    b. The net weight of the raw materials must be greater than or equal to the amount of raw materials applied for TC

    c. The name and composition of the raw material must be able to be processed into the name of the TC you applied for


The relationship between GRS and TC trading certificate

1. GRS is to prove that the factory has the ability to produce recyclable products

2. TC transaction certificate, which means that the product has recyclable material content

3. The relationship between the two:

a. Only GRS certificated manufacturer can apply for TC transaction certificate.

b. Upstream suppliers must also have GRS certification and TC transaction certificates.


The last but not the least question: Why do we need GRS?

1. The world pays attention to environmental protection and product recycling. Environmentally-friendly products are the most popular keywords in the near future.

2. Currently many brand customers have begun to find GRS suppliers, especially retail and supermarket customers, such as Wal-Mart, Carrefour, etc.





Contact: Fiona Wu

Phone: +86 18620132892

E-mail: fiona@ecofamile.com


Add: Room 3208 #F, Stone Four Business Center, Panyu District, Guangzhou, China, 511495