Do You Know What's in Your Detergent? Activists Sue to Find Out

Environmental groups will sue Procter & Gamble, Colgate-Palmolive, and two other chemical cleaner manufacturers later today to demand that they release the ingredients to their products.


Attorneys from EarthJustice will file the suit on behalf the Sierra Club and American Lung Association and four other groups. The lawsuit will be filed in New York to take advantage of a seldom-used 1976 law against using phosphates in soaps.

>> You might also digg: UPS Refuses Special Handing for 120-Year-Old Lobster’s Trek Back to Sea

The groups requested ingredient disclosure from the four companies and many others last September, citing the New York law, but these four refused to comply. On the other hand, Method Based and Seventh Generation, both companies that specialize in non-polluting cleansers, obliged the request and disclosed their ingredients.

The activists contend that some chemicals in detergents may cause asthma and skin problems for humans, and some may affect fish and marine mammal health. In the end, however, it comes down to the fact that people deserve to at least know what is inside the product they are buying.

Via: LA Times
Photo Credit: Barkdog on Flickr under Creative Commons license.

16 thoughts on “Do You Know What's in Your Detergent? Activists Sue to Find Out”

  1. While this subject may be pretty touchy for a lot of people, my opinion is that there has got to be a middle or typical ground that we all can discover. I do appreciate that you’ve additional relevant and also intelligent commentary here though. Thank you!

  2. After doing some on-line research of possible causes for dizzy spells, I discovered that ingredients in detergents could very well be my culprit, as many central nervous disorders are linked to these ingredients. With my long list of poison, I headed to my laundry room to see what products contained these ingredients. At first I was quite surprised no specific ingredients were listed. Then, I became a bit irritated. Of all the stupid, stupid regulations are government dishes out and imposes just on private individuals, I can’t believe that the government hasn’t taken issue with this, especially as many millions of people this can harm world wide. I don’t believe in big government and I’m not a big supporter of the EPA., but this is common sense. We aren’t talking about saving a lizard in a backyard, we are talking about thousands, upon thousands of people suffering directly from these poisons. Since the goverment is so concerned with our healthcare and taxing sugary foods/drinks, this should be on the front burner especially with all of the dollars spent on allergies, asthma, many other sicknesses. A person can make a conscious decision whether to eat a dozen donuts. Without knowing the ingredients we are buying in our detergents, we are not able to make that same conscious decision. It’s all about choice and personal accountability. I must take the next step and find products that are on the shelves that are healthier for my family. I should start by viewing the website listed in a previous post. I don’t believe in suing for the sake of suing, but I believe this is required. After all, what’s the secrecy? If they have to keep it in hiding, mustn’t be too good!?

  3. Companies claim that they need to withhold ingredients to keep their formula secret. But any halfway decent chemist can give you the ingredients in 20 minutes with modern technology. So the only purpose to not listing ingredients is to hide them from consumers.

  4. We dilute traditional liquid laundry soap by half for use in our Chinese made Front-Loader – To start with, this thing uses much less water, we do not use hot water, and only half the recommended soap, and get clean laundry every time!

  5. It’s about time somebody did this- it is amazing to me that any company gets to keep their product’s ingredients secret now-a-days… it’s really just a way to get away with using chemicals that don’t belong onour skin. Our bodies are equipped to filter out alot of junk, but i totally think this is why we have so many more chronic diseases, allergies, cancer, etc – there’s a chem overload on our bodies, in our food chain, on the planet.

  6. I get headaches when I wear clothes that were washed using traditional laundry detergents according to their directions… in fact, even using about half what they suggest. Now I use about 15% as much as suggested and it is better but I sure would like to know why they were giving me adverse reactions when I was using them at the recommended amount. Once I finish my current laundry detergent (which I’ve had for about a year) I am going with 7th Gen or something comparable.

  7. These companies should make sure that a list of all ingredients in their products are available to the consumers. These large corporations need to be accountable for what they are selling to the public.

  8. I work in a large hotel. What could we do with all of the little bars of soap that we have been throwing out after guests use them once?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top