LONDON, UK – The launch of the ISEAL Code of Good Practice for Sustainability Systems explored the key attributes of effective market-based approaches and why they matter in tackling environmental and social challenges.

Sustainability standards and similar systems are invaluable tools for businesses and governments grappling with pressing sustainability challenges. But with a huge range of labels, certification schemes and other market-based initiatives available, it can be challenging to identify credible systems that deliver real impact where it matters.

The ISEAL Code of Good Practice for Sustainability Systems (‘the ISEAL Code’) provides a global benchmark that outlines the core components of a credible sustainability system and how they fit together.

The ISEAL Code revises and integrates ISEAL’s established Codes of Good Practice on Impacts, Standard-Setting and Assurance, while also incorporating other key areas such as making credible claims and addressing topics including gender, due diligence and remediation. It supports sustainability systems to apply good practice in areas such as data, stakeholder engagement, and monitoring, evaluation and learning.

Patrick Mallet, Innovations Director at ISEAL, said: “This space is evolving very quickly, particularly with regulatory requirements in areas such as company due diligence and sustainable claims. We believe the ISEAL Code puts sustainability systems in a good place to meet these requirements and other emerging expectations.”

More than 200 people attended the launch webinar, including representatives from sustainability systems, NGOs, businesses, government, consultants and researchers. ISEAL discussed the evolving role of sustainability systems, why credible practice is so important, and how the ISEAL Code can help.

During a panel discussion, representatives of voluntary standards and business spoke about why the ISEAL Code is important to them. Speakers included Joana Barata Correia, Head of Responsible Sourcing at Inter IKEA Group; Evi Mateboer, Integrity Director at Assurance Services International; and Ashley Gill, Chief Strategy Officer at Textile Exchange.

Joana Barata Correia, a member of the Steering Group that advised on the ISEAL Code revision process, said: “The ISEAL Code is the product of hundreds of people, developed through a robust process with rigorous research and strong stakeholder engagement. There are many complexities and challenges for sustainability systems, but this is how, together, we’ve managed to make this topic simpler and easier to act on.”

Evi Mateboer, part of the ISEAL Technical Committee and Steering Group, said: “Putting the three existing Codes into one that is easy to read and easy to manage was a big job. The ISEAL Code now has a very logical flow and will be a helpful resource for many organisations.”

The ISEAL Code is grounded in ISEAL’s Credibility Principles, which define the core values of credible, effective sustainability systems. It was developed through an extensive global multistakeholder consultation process during 2022 and 2023, receiving feedback from more than 200 organisations in 48 countries.

Find out more about the ISEAL Code:


Suzanne Clift, Senior Communications Manager, [email protected]


ISEAL is the global membership organisation for ambitious, collaborative and transparent sustainability systems. We’re driving collective efforts to tackle the most pressing sustainability issues and create a world where markets are a force for good.

We drive improvement by defining credible practice; convening forums for collaboration, sharing of experience, and collective action; delivering expertise, advice and training; and facilitating and promoting innovation to strengthen sustainability systems.

Our Community Members are sustainability standards and similar systems that collaborate to scale and demonstrate positive impact. Our Code Compliant members go further, committing to adhere to the ISEAL Code – a globally recognised framework that defines practices for effective and credible sustainability systems.

Our membership is made up of organisations operating in diverse sectors that address critical sustainability issues such as biodiversity conservation, resource use, working conditions and producer livelihoods. 

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Contact Information:
Name: Sue Clift
Email: [email protected]
Job Title: Senior Manager, Communications