To me, health is the most important reason for a facilities manager to consider in choosing green janitorial supplies – these products impact both immediate health, as well as the long term outcomes. Although we must also consider cost when selecting the best commercial cleaning products, overall the best value takes into account price competitiveness, availability, regulatory requirements, performance, and environmental impact.
Some of the more common health problems associated with traditional cleaning chemicals include reproductive disorders, major organ damage, cancer, permanent eye damage, asthma and other respiratory ailments, headaches, nerve damage, dizziness, and fatigue. After all if your employees, custodial staff, tenants, visitors, and other stakeholders are ill and not present, you have no reason to even have a building to maintain!
Some handy facts to contemplate when selecting the best commercial cleaning products:
- The annual cost for health care and lost productivity associated with asthma is estimated by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute to be $16 billion. (2004)
- Nearly one in three workers claims to possess allergies that are aggravated by environmental conditions in their offices (CE 2007).
- According to a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency-funded project, the ingredients found in one in three commercial cleaning products are potentially harmful (JPPP).
- The Custodial Products Pollution Prevention Project estimates that the average janitor uses about 23 gallons of chemicals per year. Hazardous ingredients comprise 25% of this total (JPPP, 1999).
- The chemicals most frequently involved in poisonings reported to U.S. Poison Control Centers are cleaning products (EPA, 2003).
- The four million janitors who keep North America’s buildings clean experience unnecessarily high injury rates with some experts estimating that 6 out of every 100 are injured by the chemicals they use (Culver, 2002).
- Switching to green cleaners helps reduce the more than $75 million a year that institutions in the USA spend to address chemical-related custodial injuries (JPPP, 1999). Using safer cleaning products, in addition to better ventilation and cleaning, could improve worker productivity by between 0.5 percent and 5 percent, an annual productivity gain of $30 billion to $150 billion (Culver, 2002).
Looking for the best commercial and janitorial green cleaning products? We are pleased to offer green cleaning products for sale from a number of hand selected companies that we feel offer the best products for our Commercial and Janitorial Green Cleaning Products customers!
In some cases, green cleaning products may cost a bit more, however, when considering the additional costs associated with any health consequences, the total cost of the products is less.
Does using green cleaning products make a difference? You bet! After extensive independent testing and evaluation of seven of the top cleaning product manufacturers, Rutgers University, with 13,000 square feet to clean and maintain, switched to Rochester Midland Corporation’s EnviroCare product line and received great feedback from their staff:
- Antolina (a 33 year employee) no longer gets the rashes or lung irritation that she experienced before the switch
- Dale (a custodian with 22 years of service) reported he cannot detect a scent – this means something to Dale since before, with the traditional chemicals that smelled so bad, he had to use gloves and a mask
Furthermore, a review of the absentee records of 240 employees showed that they took 12 percent fewer sick days in the year after switching compared to the previous year. These fewer sick days represent both increased productivity and reduced health care costs in all forms (worker’s compensation, acute, and chronic). Similar improvements have also been experienced by Rochester Institute of Technology, Indiana State University, Monroe County, New York Owned Facilities, and Columbia University Medical Center amongst others. (we have copies of these studies in pdf form if you are considering switching – please give us a call and we will shoot them over to you! (720) 746-0803)
Any facility manager wants to ensure worker productivity, employee safety, and building guests’ wellbeing are all operating at peak levels. For these reasons, including health on the top of the list, we recommend picking the best commercial cleaning products, such as the Rochester Midland EnviroCare product line available from Green Cleaning Products.