What Does the "USDA Certified Biobased Product" Label Mean? | Seventh Generation
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What Does the "USDA Certified Biobased Product" Label Mean?

Author: Seventh Generation

Chances are, you've noticed the USDA Certified Biobased label on Seventh Generation products. But do you know what it means and why it's important to you as a consumer?

Back in 2002, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) initiated the USDA BioPreferred® program as part of the Farm Bill. The Program is an accreditation for products with demonstrated biobased content – meaning the ingredients come from renewable biological sources.

The USDA Certified Biobased product label actually lists the percentage of biobased content in each product. The move was made to help consumers identify biobased products and increase the demand for renewable commodities. Our hope is that sharing our biobased content will encourage consumers to make more informed and conscious decisions about how products are made.

So why buy biobased? There are a lot of good reasons why the USDA is promoting biobased products: Biobased products replace the need for many petroleum-based products, reducing our dependence on fossil fuels. By reducing the need for mining and burning of fossil carbon, we can avoid the release of new carbon into the atmosphere and help control climate change. 

Also, by choosing USDA certified biobased products, you can be assured that the USDA and the Federal government stand behind the accuracy of the percent biobased claim stated on the label. Manufacturers who have been awarded the rights to use the USDA certified biobased label on a product have submitted test evidence of the biobased content for that product to the USDA and American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM).

Seventh Generation as was one of the first recipients of the USDA Certified Biobased product label, and as an active participant in the USDA BioPreferred program, we've been shown to have some of the highest biobased contents in our class!

Learn more about the USDA BioPreferred® program at www.biopreferred.gov.   



hughesey picture
Whether its a soy based solvent,vegetable derived detergent or a cleaning agent made from coconut oil, each ingredient comes from a renewable resource. The biobased products profile & footprint far outweigh and outperform its synthetic, petroluem based equivalent. Most of the biobased products feed stock comes from plant based waste material such as grapefruit,lemon and orange peels as well as corn, palm and cocunut oils from crop trimmings. Also soy is a great replacement for certain hydrocarbon solvents used to make heavy duty household & commercial cleaners.
moscowrecycling picture
This may be a question for scienceman. I have not done a lot of research on this topic but my initial thoughts on biobased plastics are mixed. It is great to become less dependent on fossil fuels. However, fossil fuels are likely used to grow crops for biobased plastics; fertilizers and pesticides may also be used on these crops; what about water that may be used on these crops. Also, are we not taking lands out of production for food? We have many people going hungry in the world. Can someone at Seventh Generation speak to these concerns? That being said, thanks for all you do to make your products as environmentally benign as possible.
Trudy Ravita picture
Trudy Ravita
My friend Carl Archambeault forwarded me some videos about the new laundry detergent containers and plastic recycling. I'm going to show them to the students in our school for Earth Day. We recycle plastic, paper, cardboard and glass during the school year. The videos will show them how these items are recycled and reused.