IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Read statements about safety of cleaners

Read the full statements from safety councils and manufacturers of household cleaning products in response to the book, "Green Goes with Everything".
/ Source: TODAY

Statement from CDC
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CD) National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals provides an ongoing assessment of the U.S. population's exposure to environmental chemicals by measuring the chemicals or their metabolites in human specimens such as blood or urine. The Third Report, which identifies 148 chemicals, does not present new data on health risks from different exposures. The population studies performed by CDC help us understand, for the first time, which environmental chemicals can enter human beings. These studies also tell us if certain groups of people are more exposed than others. This biomonitoring data directs researchers and scientists to which chemicals should be targeted for study and at what levels in the body are appropriate to study.

  • The number or sum of chemicals detected in the blood and urine of an individual may not be a useful measure for assessing a person's health because of the following-
  • We do not know what the presence of most chemicals mean. For some environmental chemicals, such as lead, research studies have given us a good understanding of the health risks associated with different blood lead levels. However, for many environmental chemicals, we need to conduct more research to assess health risks from different blood or urine levels.
  • The number of chemicals may be a measure of what humans are exposed to, but it is the concentrations or amounts in the blood or urine that determine whether a particular chemical has a health effect. So, each chemical must be considered individually and not as a sum.
  • Research data in populations that demonstrate associations between concentrations or amounts of the chemicals with health effects do not translate into valid diagnostic medical tests. An entirely separate set of validation studies would be needed for that interpretation.
  • The measurement of an environmental chemical in a person's blood or urine does not by itself mean that the chemical causes disease. Advances in analytical methods allow us to measure low levels of environmental chemicals in people, but separate studies of varying exposure levels and health effects are needed to determine which blood or urine levels result in disease. These studies must also consider other factors such as duration of exposure.

Statement from Soap and Detergent Association
SDA has unveiled, a special microsite with useful, straightforward science-based information on cleaning and fabric care products.

"We regret that author Sloan Barnett unfairly attacks products that are used safely and effectively by millions of people every day - in homes, offices, hospitals, day care centers, and other institutions," said Brian Sansoni, SDA Vice President of Communication.

"An incredible amount of research and development goes on before these products ever hit the shelves, not to mention that the products must meet all applicable federal and state quality, safety and labeling regulations.

"Responsible manufacturers ensure their products go through comprehensive, extensive risk assessments, and also review scientific developments and monitor product use data that may affect the safety assessment process."

SDA noted that companies are committed to providing meaningful information to consumers because they are asking more questions about product ingredients.

"Consumers have greater access to health and safety information than ever before about cleaning products - through information available via product labels, company websites and toll-free hotlines."

Beware the call for "mix your own" concoctions.

SDA reminds consumers that safety should be the number one concern when it comes to "make your own" cleaning product recipes, which lack the safety assurances of commercially formulated cleaning products.

"These 'make your own' concoctions are not regulated by the government and often come without safety tips and directions for proper use, dosage and storage," said Sansoni. "With these 'homemade' cleaners, consumers may miss some safety assurances, spend more, clean less effectively and even lose some important health and hygiene benefits of cleaning."

SDA has also published an online guide to safe and effective use of cleaning products, "Clean and Safe in the 21st Century," which consumers can download at

Statement from Consumer Specialty Products Association
President Christopher Cathcart
"First, consumers need to understand the source of this information. Sloan Barnett is married to the Chairman and CEO of Shaklee Corporation, a competing manufacturer of cleaning products. Consumers need to be aware of the author's bias when presenting her 'facts'.

"Second, cleaning products are an important component of healthy housekeeping and are labeled and regulated by the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission. Disinfectants (antimicrobials), registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, are critical to hygiene and help protect families against staph, salmonella, and other bacteria when used according to label instructions."

About CSPA
The Consumer Specialty Products Association is a non-profit national trade association representing approximately 250 companies engaged in the manufacture, formulation, distribution and sale of hundreds of familiar consumer products. It is organized into seven divisions: Aerosol Products, Air Care, Antimicrobial Products, Cleaning Products, Pest Management Products, Industrial and Automotive Specialty Chemicals, and Polishes and Floor Maintenance. For more information, please visit

To learn more about cleaning and disinfecting go to and

Statement from Personal Care Products Council
"Safety is the highest priority of personal care products companies. It is the foundation of the industry and the reason why our products have a long history of safe use. The U.S. Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act requires companies to substantiate the safety of all products and ingredients before they are marketed. Personal care product companies take this responsibility very seriously and employ thousands of scientists and other experts to perform sophisticated safety assessments to ensure products are safe. These assessments take into account that products may be used over the course of a lifetime. We encourage consumers who want more information on personal care product safety to visit"

The Personal Care Products Council is the leading national trade association that represents the cosmetic and personal care products industry. Founded in 1894, the Council has more than 600 member companies that manufacture, distribute, and supply the vast majority of finished personal care products marketed in the U.S. As the makers of a diverse range of products millions of consumers rely on everyday, from sunscreens, toothpaste and shampoo to moisturizer, lipstick and fragrance, personal care products companies are global leaders committed to product safety, quality and innovation.

Statement from SOCMA (Synthetic Organic Chemical Manufacturers Association)
"Cleaning supplies, like other household products, should generally be presumed safe and effective when used as directed. Consumers should be assured that our members, who manufacture ingredients, regularly evaluate the safety of their own products before and during production. These products have increased the quality of everyday life for people by limiting the spread of germs and disease. To this end, SOCMA has created the International Center for Sustainable Chemistry for industry to promote a consensus on what makes chemistry and industrial manufacturing processes 'green'."

The Synthetic Organic Chemical Manufacturers Association's commitment to serving the batch, custom and specialty chemical industry dates back to its inception in 1921.

SOCMA's original charter dedicated the organization to promoting high industry standards, building public awareness and working with government agencies to develop and improve the industry. While much has changed in the ensuing decades, SOCMA's pledge to these principles has not changed.