ACI American Cleaning Institute
Alcohol An organic compound in which a hydroxyl group (-OH) is attached to a carbon atom. See Organic.
Carbon dioxide The major gas produced when organic materials (see Organic), such as fossil fuels, are burned. Carbon dioxide is the most significant greenhouse gas. (See Greenhouse gases.)
Ceres Coalition for Environmentally Responsible Economies
Channels (grocery/natural) The markets we sell product to. For example, “grocery channel” means grocery stores and “natural channel” represents natural food stores.
Chlorine A highly reactive chemical element. Chlorine is an effective disinfectant, but reacts with organic materials (see Organic) to form substances that persist in the environment and concentrate in animal and human tissue.
CO2 See Carbon dioxide.
CO2e The universal unit of measurement used to indicate the global warming potential of a mixture of greenhouse gases.
CR Corporate responsibility
Ethoxylation Modification with ethylene oxide. Ethoxylation is a chemical process in which ethylene oxide is added to fatty alcohols to make them more soluble in water.
FSC Forest Stewardship Council
GHG Greenhouse gas. See Greenhouse gases.
Global Warming Potential a measure of how much a given mass of greenhouse gas is estimated to contribute to global warming.
Greenhouse gases Gases that are transparent to sunlight, but trap heat in the Earth’s atmosphere, in the same way glass traps heat in a greenhouse
GRI Global Reporting Initiative. An international, multi-stakeholder governed institution collaborating to provide global standards in sustainability reporting.
HDPE High density polyethylene, a common plastic used for milk, cleaner, and cosmetic containers. Plastic recycling symbol “2”
LEED Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design ( Green Building Rating)
Life cycle analysis An evaluation of the environmental burdens associated with each stage of a product’s life from creation and transportation to use and disposal
MIPs Materials, Ingredients and Packaging
MPAR Manufacturing Partner Annual Report
MSDS material safety data sheet
MT Metric ton
Organic Chemicals based on the element carbon. Organic chemicals may be natural or synthetic (derived from petroleum). Not to be confused with certified organic agriculture.
PCR Post-consumer recycled
PET Polyethylene terephthalate, a common plastic used for water bottles.
Phthalates Esters of phthalic acid used as plasticizers and as solvents for fragrances. See Ester.
Phosphates A nutrient (required by living things to grow). Also used in detergents to counter the effects of minerals in water (hard water). When phosphate-containing wastewater is discharged into lakes and streams, rapid algae growth occurs, turning the water green, depriving fish of oxygen, and diminishing the utility and recreational value of the lake.
PIR Post-industrial recycled
Polymer A natural or synthetic compound made of repeating units of small molecules of the same kind.
ppm Parts per million
Precautionary principle An approach to risk management of chemicals that presumes a chemical may cause harm unless tested and shown otherwise
RSPO Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil
Surfactant A substance that alters the surface properties of water so that the water can combine with grease and oil. Surfactants are the key ingredient in most cleaning products.
Synthetic Of artificial, man-made origin
VOCs See Volatile organic compounds.
Volatile organic compounds Compounds of carbon (see Organic) that readily evaporate, and therefore can pollute the atmosphere. Ethyl alcohol (ethanol) is an example of a volatile organic compound.