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Letters to the editor

September 19, 2010
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Editor’s note: The following letter to the editor is in reference to the recent Cleaning Industry Research Institute (CIRI) symposium, which was held on April 30-May 2 at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

According to, the purpose of the symposium was to “identify science-based issues important to the cleaning industry and to assemble currently available science that can address those issues.”

Letter to the Editor:

CIRI may be greener than it thinks

Dear editor:

I attended the recent CIRI symposium in Las Vegas and consider it one of the best cleaning-related presentations I have ever attended.

CIRI’s goals, like mine, are to make sure that professional cleaning products remove unwanted matter and that their efficacy can be backed up with scientific evidence.

On the second day of the symposium, green cleaning and the use of environmentally preferable cleaning products were addressed.

CIRI has already gone on record as stating that it believes we must always clean for health and hygiene first and consider the use of green cleaning products second.

CIRI interprets environmentally preferable products to be those that are safer to the user, environmentally sound and effective.

Effective is the keyword here and why CIRI may be supporting green cleaning and related products more than it realizes.

Ten years ago, questioning how effectively a green cleaning product performed was justified.

Many did not perform well when compared to conventional cleaning products.

If, at that time, I were the purchasing agent for a school district and my JanSan distributor encouraged me to select green cleaning products, the first thing I would ask is, “Does it perform?”

If it passed the performance test, then I would ask, “What makes it green and how does it protect health and the environment?”

But, today, green cleaning products from several JanSan manufacturers have been tested and are considered as good as many comparable conventional products.

Time and technology have paved the way for better green products and the gulf between cleaning effectively and cleaning green has dramatically narrowed — if it still exists at all.

Mike Sawchuk
Peterborough, Ontario
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