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Terminology 101 For Organic Cleaning Products

In a time where there is so much talk about climate change, environmental impacts and carbon footprints, we are all looking to play our part. One focus area for every household and business is cleaning products. There is a growing demand for affordable organic cleaning products as an alternative to the chemical variety.

When selecting organic cleaning products, a lot of jargon is bandied about. Here’s an explanation of some of these terms to help you make the best product choices for your home and business.

Microbial And Anti-Microbial

Microbial cleaning happens when biological agents such as bacteria and enzymes are used to promote an accelerated breakdown of various compounds. For example, breaking oil and grease down into carbon dioxide and water. This is a safe, environmentally friendly way of cleaning many kinds of contaminants.

Not all microbes (the tiny living things all around us) are friendly. Anti-Microbials refer to substances added to products to kill or slow the growth of unwanted microbes.

Plant Extracts

Plant extracts are substances that have been obtained from plant sources through extraction methods such as maceration (softening by soaking in a liquid) or percolation (movement and filtration of a liquid through a porous material or filter). These plant-based products can then be used as ingredients in organic cleaning products.


In an environmental sense, this is the ability to meet our own needs without reducing the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. So, in other words, it means using resources without depleting them or permanently damaging their ability to be produced in the future.


Biodegradable is the ability of things to be broken down (decomposed) into their basic components and be returned to the earth without causing harm to the environment. The best biodegradable substances will break down quickly, leaving nothing harmful behind.

Enzyme Technology

Enzymes are non-living even though they are produced by live bacteria. So you can think of enzymes as tools to help speed up chemical reactions making the good bacteria better at their job of digesting waste, soils and stains.  

Active Surfactants

Surfactants are one of the main ingredients in cleaning products. Their main job is to cause activity on the surface that you are cleaning, which allows dirt and other undesirable particles to be more easily trapped and removed.

To learn more about our full range of organic cleaning products, contact Enviro Plus Products today on 1800 177 399 or sales@enviroplusproducts.com.au and let us advise you on the best products to suit your needs application. Click here to request a copy of our brochure and check out all our environmentally friendly products.

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