Seal It With Natural

By Sarah Toland

You no longer need to question which household cleaners are truly green. In February, the Natural Products Association (NPA) launched the first-ever natural seal for home-care items, including household cleaners and detergents. Previously, there had been no industry-wide standard or regulation for home-care products labeled “natural,” “nontoxic,” or “green.”

The NPA awards its seal only to products that don’t contain ingredients known to harm human health or the environment. Ingredients must be biodegradable and derived from natural sources; synthetics are allowed only when no viable natural alternative exists, and they can’t exceed 5 percent of a product’s total composition by weight. In addition, manufacturing processes must not include harsh chemicals or alter the state of natural ingredients in any way. Finally, products awarded the NPA seal should be sustainably packaged and must never be tested on animals.