With awareness growing around the need to find eco-friendly and sustainable products, companies have responded by beginning to create a wider variety of options for environmental sustainability. It may feel confusing to change from a brand you are familiar with to a new version that is more natural-based. With a little bit of research, it can be helpful to define which product might be best for you, so here is more information on what to look for.
What Are the Company’s Priorities?
One of the first things to consider is what kinds of companies are producing the product and what their primary goals are with waste-to-energy methods. By knowing what the business is offering to the public and what process they have set for distribution, you can match your personal sustainability goals with the right company for you.
You will want to ask questions like:
● Once the individual is done with the product, will more pollution be created?
● What materials are the product made of, and are they toxic?
● What did it take to get the product to you or the store?
● What level of energy did it take to create the item?
● How much excess packaging does the item come with?
Understanding what drives a company's goals can make a difference in the way a consumer is choosing products. One example of how items can affect sustainability is plastic bottle production.
Because they require more than 17 million barrels of oil each year and produce more than 2.5 million tons of carbon dioxide in the process, it is clear why there needs to be more awareness around purchases that are being made.
Looking at the Ingredients
The next thing that can help you choose eco-friendly products is to look at what is in the item you are purchasing.
Understanding the ingredient makeup will tell you if it is a safer and green product to utilize, and here are some toxins to look for.
Common products found with petroleum in them are generally in cleaning materials, including formaldehyde which is considered highly toxic to humans.
Ammonia is highly toxic and is commonly listed as ammonia solutions or ammonia water on labels. Its popularity is due to its ability to break down grime quickly and leave behind a cleaner surface. It is more commonly found in all-purpose cleaners and can be dangerous if mixed with bleach, causing a chemical response.
Phosphates are another controversial chemical commonly found in cleaning agents such as dishwashing soaps and detergents. They became popular due to their ability to soften hard water, but unfortunately, it contributes to a reduction in the amount of oxygen found in bodies of water in nature.
Fragrances or Phthalates
These chemicals are found in hundreds of products, from toys to pharmaceuticals. Research has found that they can play a part in disrupting human reproduction and development.
How Labels Can Be Deceiving
Being aware that companies may list a product as being natural or eco-friendly, but they may not fully be. Some products can be listed under one item because they have the same chemical make as the primary form. There may also be the case where the main ingredient is distributed in multiple ways, reducing the amount of product in the item so it does not need to be listed.
It can be highly beneficial to do some research if you consider a new product to ensure the company is producing items you want to support. If the item in the ingredient list is full of chemical terminology, it can be good practice to understand all the chemicals involved.
Is the Product Available Recycled?
When you first start researching, you may also want to investigate if the product is available in a recycled option. If the company continually promotes the reduce, reuse, and recycle method, it will be listed in their business information. And whether it's construction materials or household goods, they can come in recycled choices, so we recommend researching before purchasing.
Can You Make it at Home?
Another question you can ask yourself is, are the products that you're looking to replace something that can be made at home. Multiple ingredients can be purchased independently and combined to offer an eco-friendlier option at home.
LJP Waste Solutions: Promoting Streamlined Sustainability for Our World
There are multiple benefits to gaining greater awareness around what companies are producing in the products you are using on a day-to-day basis. Making a few subtle changes can increase your overall health and longevity and encourage sustainability focused companies to keep producing more products that are healthier for the environment.
LJP Waste Solutions is a company whose primary focus is on creating a zero-landfill environment for all the businesses that we work with. We work hard to streamline sustainability processes that work with our client's needs to promote goals that they can meet. We specialize in waste solutions and residential garbage services to provide a range of options for our community.
If you are looking for a solution to promote sustainability in your business or home, contact us today or give us a call at 507-625-1968.