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Green procurement

Green procurement tips

Green products are items that are environmentally friendly.

When possible buy products that are:

  • less toxic
  • minimally polluting
  • energy efficient
  • safer and healthier for patients, workers and the environment
  • easier to repair
  • easier to recycle
  • using less packaging
  • more durable (have a longer life time)
  • locally produced (travel short transport distances)

High environmental-impact products and services

Products and services that have the highest environmental impacts are:

  • transport
  • energy
  • construction
  • food and catering services
  • cleaning products and services
  • textiles and uniforms
  • IT equipment
  • paper

Read the Green procurement guidance for the public sector. This outlines your statutory obligations when buying these products.

Quick wins when procuring green products

  • Ask your supplier if they have a sustainable alternative to your standard supplies.
  • Buy from local suppliers where possible to reduce impacts from transport.
  • Select lower-energy-use equipment like A-rated or EU Ecolabel.
  • Replace standard paper for FSC certified or recycled paper.
  • Avoid single-use products unless there is a clinical requirement.
  • Do a review when renewing contracts and replace standard products for sustainable alternatives.



Green Procurement Guidance for the Public Sector

Green Tenders Action Plan on GPP (PDF, 803KB, 74 pages)

Buying Green! - A Handbook on green public procurement

Public procurement for a better environment (PDF, 65KB, 12 pages)

Sustainable Public Procurement in European Healthcare

Case studies

Supply of locally grown produce to the catering department at Cork University Hospital (PDF, 122KB, 1 page)

Related topic

Energy supply contracts