Thursday, March 18, 2010

New "Natural Products" Certification

The Natural Products Association, a Washington-based group representing manufacturers and retailers including Clorox Co. and Whole Foods Market, released new standards last month for natural home care products. It seems that there is concern that products like household cleaners and detergents can say on they are natural on their labels when in fact they are made mostly of synthetic ingredients. So NPA issued guidelines, and products that meet those standards will be able to display the association's seal (see above).

Most people think that natural means that the product's ingredients are derived from renewable resources like plants and minerals. But believe it or not, NPA is the first to issue a uniform standard among manufacturers for use of the word in home-care products.

To display the seal, products will have to meet criteria that include:

- 95% of the ingredients in the product, excluding water, must be derived from natural sources.

- non-natural ingredients should be used only when alternative natural ingredients are unavailable.

- the product should contain no ingredients with suspected human health risks.

NPA says it is reviewing full ingredient lists from manufacturers who have applied for certification to determine whether their products qualify. The seal will be seen on products in the next several months.

More information can be found at the NPA site.

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