By Dylan Beach
Sustainability Manager, GOJO Industries
This year, the basic principle of good hand hygiene that we learned as children has become ingrained in all of us in ways it never was before. With global demand for hand hygiene products higher than ever before, these products must be not only safe, effective, and good for you, but also good for the environment. This is core to our GOJO Purpose of Saving Lives and Making Lives Better Through Well-Being Solutions.
Our commitment to sustainability and climate action is shown through the third-party certifications of our products. Which is why we are excited to announce that several of our hand sanitizer and soap formulas recently achieved certification through the Cradle to Cradle Certified™ Products Program – the world's most advanced standard for safe, circular, and responsible materials and products. This certification will help us exceed one of our sustainability goals set in 2015 to double the percentage of sales from products with third-party certification by 2020.
Since April, over 350 global SKUs connected to PURELL® hand sanitizer and PURELL® HEALTHY SOAP® with CLEAN RELEASE™* Technology achieved Cradle to Cradle Certified™ Gold with a Platinum level Material Health rating, the highest material health rating possible. These are the first Gold-level hand sanitizers in the world and first soaps sold in the B2B marketplace in the U.S to achieve this certification (and the second gold-certified B2B soaps in the world).
Why is achieving Cradle to Cradle Certified™ significant?
The Cradle to Cradle Certified™ Products Program looks at more than just a product's ingredients. Products are assessed across five sustainability categories: material health, material reutilization, renewable energy and carbon management, water stewardship, and social fairness. This comprehensive analysis goes beyond being a recognized mark of product quality but is a process that leads companies to make better products, better companies, and better communities. As part of our innovation process, our formulators consider third-party certification requirements to design more sustainable products.
As the most robust product standard, Cradle to Cradle Certified™ is a popular certification with those who certify their buildings to a green building standard, like LEED or WELL. It's a sought-after certification for building materials, furniture, flooring, and increasingly cosmetics and personal care products. Cradle to Cradle Certified™ is recognized as a preferred product certification by Walmart, The Home Depot, Amazon, and Walgreens, and more consumer product companies are working to adopt this respected certification. GOJO is a leader in our industry in offering third-party certified products to our customers, and Cradle to Cradle Certified™ represents a significant next step of our leadership. We seek these certifications in an effort to offer premier products without compromise, offering safe, effective, and sustainable products to our customers everywhere.
Third-party certifications offer a trusted outside voice to help customers quickly identify a product with higher levels of environmental and/or social performance and products with ingredient safety. They are popular among retailers looking to ensure they offer sustainable products to their customers. For example, Amazon is partnering with trusted third-party certifying bodies like Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute to launch its 'Climate Pledge Friendly' badge that features Cradle to Cradle Certified™ products.
Safe is fundamental to a circular economy
"Before circular, products must be safe." Bill McDonough, circular economy pioneer and co-founder of MBDC, who provided the assessments for our certifications, emphasizes that we must ensure the safety of the molecules we choose to manufacture our products. A circular economy is one that has designed out waste and pollution and restores natural systems. As GOJO increasingly works to design our products to support a more circular economy, we know safe is a building block.
Our hand hygiene and surface formulations result from decades of scientific innovation, using high-quality ingredients that are rigorously tested for both safety and efficacy. The Cradle to Cradle Certified™ Products Program offers the most robust 3rd party substantiation of this brand promise.
Living our purpose through meaningful products
Our purpose inspires us to continuously innovate and find new ways to enhance the lives of those we touch. It inspires us to positively impact public health and the world in which we live each day. It drives us to find new ways to create Sustainable Value through innovative solutions that bring social, environmental, and economic value for all GOJO stakeholders.
Our continued focus on Sustainable Value helped us achieve this respected certification – initiatives like always selecting safe ingredients for our formulations, making our formulations highly biodegradable, using biobased ingredients, powering our Wooster manufacturing facility with solar energy, and more.
We are excited that, by achieving Platinum level Material Health ratings, the formulations that go into our certified products are compatible with human and ecological health and ready to cycle in a circular economy.
Contact your distributor to learn how our certified products can support your sustainability efforts, such as certifying to green building standards.
*Cleans & Moisturizes