When using household cleaners we can forget that once they get washed down the drain, they enter the soil and the water supply and can end up in rivers, lakes and oceans, where any chemicals released can pollute the environment and pose serious threats to wildlife and ourselves.
Manufacturers of household cleaners are not required to disclose exactly what’s in their products, and under current regulations chemicals with hazardous classifications need only be listed on the label if they are present above prescribed levels.
Off-the-shelf household cleaning supplies contain petrochemical detergents often called ionic detergents which are poorly biodegradable and can cause damage to the surrounding ecosystems. They may also contain phosphates which do not degrade at all and choke up waterways by increasing algae growth. Chlorine bleaches can wreak havoc on our own airways and even our nervous system and there may also be artificial colourings and preservatives such as formaldehyde.
If you use these products in small amounts, the irritating effects are small, but children and anyone with a weakened immune system is especially susceptible to their potentially toxic effects.
Most cleaning jobs can be easily handled without these toxic products. The following everyday ingredients can do the job as they did in the old days. Most are inexpensive and you may already have some of them in your kitchen cupboards. All these cleaners are safe, effective and cost-efficient and will not harm the environment, or you and your family. Try using baking soda, castille and vegetable oil based soaps, borax, cornstarch, salt, vinegar, lemon juice, washing soda and herbs and essential oils for your cleaning.
At Cornucopia we sell several brands of environmentally friendly and non-toxic cleaning products for your home which use plant based ingredients, and commonly occurring minerals and essential oils. We also sell Soap Nuts, which are the dried fruit of the Chinese Soapberry tree. The nuts contain saponin, a natural cleaner used for thousands of years. We also sell Dr Bronners and other castile soaps,baking soda and cider vinegar in bulk, as well as essential oils.
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