12 Months to Zero Waste - March - Valley Voice 2024 Community Challenge

12 Months to Zero Waste - March - Valley Voice 2024 Community Challenge

12 months to zero waste

Month three, can you believe it?  How did your Loo Review go last month, was anyone brave enough to consider reusable toilet paper? By now I’ll bet you’re starting to become more aware of your consumer habits and waste streams.  The small actions should be starting to add up and hopefully, you’re noticing a reduction in landfill and recycling waste coming and going from your home. Good job team!  You’re doing great!  Let’s keep it up by planning for some spring cleaning and taking a deep dive into greenwashing.


Month 2: Clean Cleaning

Is it really “Green”?

Start here: Be a Slogan Sleuth

Greenwashing in household cleaning products can take many forms. Companies often use vague, unregulated terms like 'green', 'natural', or 'eco-friendly' without providing anything to back it up. The lack of a universally accepted definition for these terms creates a grey area that can be easily exploited. Often a company might highlight one environmentally sound aspect of a product while completely ignoring more significant, harmful environmental impacts. For instance, a cleaner might be advertised as “made with natural ingredients” but still contain harmful chemicals or be produced in ways that harm the environment.  Here are a few things to watch out for:

  • Vague or broad claims: Be skeptical of products that make broad claims like ‘eco-friendly’ without providing specific information. Genuine green products usually offer detailed information about why they are environmentally friendly.
  • Misleading labels and certifications: Some products may advertise certifications or eco-labels that are not backed by credible organizations.
  • Lack of transparency: Companies that are genuinely committed to sustainability usually share detailed information about their practices and ingredients. A lack of transparency is often a huge red flag.

Being vigilant about greenwashing ensures that your choices align with your values of sustainability and environmental responsibility. By critically evaluating products and looking beyond surface claims, consumers can avoid being misled and support genuinely green products and practices.

Lastly, it’s important to remember that true eco-friendly products not only focus on the contents but also consider packaging, production processes, and corporate sustainability practices.


So now what?

Start here: Shop Small!

Allow me to introduce you to Mint Cleaning.  If you haven’t already heard of them, Mint was established in Ucluelet, BC in 2016 as a cleaning business, but over the next few years, they found that the products they were using were making them feel unwell.  Fast forward to 2020 and they launched their ever-growing line of handmade, all-natural cleaning products.  Fast forward again to 2024 and they can be found in well over 100 retailers across Canada and have won awards for their business successes.  So, why am I telling you all this? Well, for a couple of reasons:

1) Their small-batch, handmade products smell amazing and work incredibly well. 

2) Because they, as a company, epitomize what it means to be truly “green”.  From the ingredients they use in their products, to the packaging and refill programs, along with their company ethics and transparency… all of this means you can feel confident that you’re making a good choice for the earth and your body (and the local economy too, but that’s a whole other story).

The best news is that Mint is just one beautiful example of many amazing Canadian companies that are producing good clean cleaning products and being open and honest about their company ethos and ethics so that you can make informed decisions that you can feel good about. 


REFILL your Clean Cleaning Products at plentiFILL!

So, what can you refill at plentiFILL to make your Spring Cleaning safer for you and the environment?  Go to plentifill.ca to check it out or bring your empty bottles down to 163 Kenneth st to see for yourself!  Happy cleaning friends!

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