Thursday, October 21, 2010

Natural household cleaning products

Monday, CBC News had an interesting article about how some corporations are changing the way they do things, seeking out more environmentally friendly, sustainable practices before being forced to through legislation or regulation. And these are big, name brand corporations like Clorox and Procter and Gamble.

Good news! But along with these positive changes, there are some changes that do raise concerns for consumers. Among them is the use of the word "natural" in product names and descriptions. What does natural mean to us? What does it mean to them? The Natural Products Association (NPA), a group that has been advocating on behalf of natural products since 1926, is trying to help consumers out. They have established a standard for the use of the word natural in household cleaning products.

Under the NPA's new definition, "a household cleaning product is considered natural if it is made from 95 per cent natural ingredients, which are defined as those that come or are made from a renewable resource found in nature with absolutely no petroleum compounds." The full breakdown of their standard is available here.

NPA spokesperson, Dr. Daniel Fabricant, has advice for consumers who want to buy natural but don't know which products to choose, "If you don't see [a list of] ingredients on the product, don't buy the product."

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