The Green Scene “April 2013”
How to Spot a Green Cleaner
Knowing when a claim of being green is actually true and not an advertising ploy can be difficult if you are not armed with the knowledge of how to spot a green cleaner. There are a few approaches to finding one. They include using a third-party certification as a guide, reviewing the ingredients and product label and/or researching the company.
There are many different third-party certifications or ecolabels. Each certifier has a different set of standards to which they adhere. In the next few months, I will provide an overview of some of the popular labels to further you decision-making power.
The first to be discussed is the Design for the Environment label.
When you see the DfE logo on a product it means that DfE scientists have screened the product for both potential human health and environmental effects. Presently approximately 2,800 products have been labeled through this program. Based on currently available information, EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) experts consider that DfE-labeled products:
- · Are formulated from the safest possible ingredients. Through this program, they have
increased the use of safer chemicals by hundreds of millions of pounds.
- · Include the consideration of solvents, wetting agents and other surfactant ingredients.
- · Are free from masked problematic chemicals including those that result from
negative combinations of product components.
- · Are screened for fragrances and dyes that may present health effects and recommends
safer substitutes for problematic chemicals.
The DfE label is an easy way to know you are choosing products that is as safe as possible for both people and the environment.
For more information request the UF/IFAS EDIS Publication FCS8 OH 2010 Cleaning and Sanitizing the Kitchen: Using Inexpensive Household Food-Safe Products.