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Defra Endorses ‘Sustainable Cleaning’

03 June 2008

A newly launched sustainable cleaning guide from the British Association for Chemical Specialities (BACS) and the UK Cleaning Products Industry Association (UKCPI) has been given an endorsement by Defra.

The document, supported by the British Cleaning Council, gives step by step guidance for adopting best practice on three key issues on cleaning product sustainability: formulation, manufacturing and product usage. It illustrates the principles behind these steps – from optimising resource usage to tackling waste packaging, providing links for further reading, while dispelling one or two environmental myths along the way.

Selden Research’s Pete Woodhead, who chaired the Sustainable Cleaning project, representing BACS and UKCPI, said:

“The pressure to ‘go green’ continues to mount; more and more firms are trying to position their products as the environmentally friendly option. However, deciphering true best practice from the marketing spin has never been harder.

“Just as the rush into bio-fuels had a huge knock-on effect on deforestation and food supplies, blindly jumping onto the green bandwagon can also cause serious harm.

“Guidance was badly needed on what is genuinely best practice for environmentally friendly cleaning products. Defra recognised this and have put their name to the first truly authoritative guidance on green issues in the cleaning industry”.

The document explores ways of improving sustainability, for example, one particularly important item laid out in ‘Sustainable Cleaning’ are the directions on selecting ingredients for product safety.

Having the Defra endorsement is a major coup for the Sustainable Cleaning team, making it the first ever such document to be branded in this way. The project has been four years in the making and has been reviewed by various Government advisory bodies, including the UK Chemicals Stakeholder Forum which includes academics and environmentalists, and has recently been commended by the University of York’s Green Chemistry Network.

Further information can be found at the following addresses, where the document can be downloaded:

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