Seventh Generation ProfessionalBy ISSA Today Staff | August 16, 2021 << Back to Articles
Seventh Generation. This company takes its name from the Great Law of the Iroquois Confederacy that states, “In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations.”
Seventh Generation truly strives to live up to that name in every way.
What is their mission? To help transform the world into a healthy, sustainable, and equitable place for the next seven generations and many more generations to come. That mission is at the heart of everything they do.
Read on to see how Seventh Generation Professional is accomplishing this and making a difference as it produces environmentally conscious options.
From the beginning
For more than 30 years, it has been Seventh Generation’s objective to formulate environmentally conscious and effective cleaning solutions, and advocate for positive, systemic change within the home care cleaning industry. Founded in 1988, the Burlington, Vermont–based company distributes products to natural food stores, supermarkets, mass merchants, and online retailers. In 2016, the consumer goods company Unilever acquired Seventh Generation.
Seventh Generation offers cleaning solutions in many categories—including surface cleaners, laundry detergent, dish soap, baby products, personal care products, and more—all made with the well-being of people and the environment in mind.
In 2018, Seventh Generation launched Seventh Generation Professional with a dedicated product line for businesses. Seventh Generation Professional offers surface cleaners, disinfectants, hand wash, liquid laundry and dish soaps for commercial cleaning.
The product difference
What makes Seventh Generation Professional stand out from the other cleaning product manufacturers? “Every action and decision we take connects back to our mission to transform the world into a healthy, sustainable, and equitable place for the next seven generations,” says Stefan Bachofen, Brand Manager for Seventh Generation Professional. “From a product standpoint, we deliver on our mission by designing powerful cleaners made with the well-being of people and planet in mind, with no compromise on performance.”
These values guided the 2020 launch of their botanical disinfectants, made with CleanWell® proprietary disinfecting technology. The team focused on four key areas:
- Performance: Seventh Generation Professional knows that a disinfectant’s efficacy is the most crucial product attribute to their customers. As a result, their botanical disinfectants kill 99.9% of bacteria and viruses* botanically (*as specified on the product label).
- Usability: Seeking broad appeal to businesses searching for disinfectants for use in food service, early education, hospitality, and office facilities, Seventh Generation Professional provided solutions. “By using a botanical active ingredient, we were able to achieve compatibility for a variety of business environments,” claims Bachofen. “For example, a key attribute of our Disinfecting Kitchen Cleaner is no rinsing or wiping required, even on food contact surfaces.”
- Cost: Seventh Generation Professional prioritized being price-efficient while delivering more value to the end users. Bachofen reveals, “We developed a 32-ounce sprayer and a one-gallon refill and priced the gallon refill to be more economical than the sprayer. These cost savings matter to our customers.”
- Advancing Seventh Generation’s mission: All that the company does connects them back to their mission. For Seventh Generation Professional Disinfecting Cleaners, this added value means using a botanical ingredient made from essential oil, packaging made with +80% post-consumer recycled (PCR) content, and a formula suitable for child care centers and commercial kitchens.
What is Seventh Generation Professional’s most recent product innovation? Bachofen hints, “By marrying the market opportunity with our mission, we developed a disinfectant, made with CleanWell proprietary disinfecting technology, that could unlock the power of a botanical ingredient without compromising on performance.”
The final innovation was an assortment of three broad-spectrum and ready-to-use botanical disinfectants (Disinfecting Kitchen Cleaner, Disinfecting Bathroom Cleaner, and Disinfecting Wipes) that can clean, disinfect, and deodorize, with the following key benefits:
- Kills 99.9% of bacteria and viruses as specified on the product label.
- No rinsing or wiping required, even on food contact
- Refer to EPA List N: Disinfectants for Coronavirus (COVID-19 virus).
- Botanical disinfectant made from essential oil (active ingredient Thymol).
- The 32-ounce Disinfecting Kitchen Cleaner is also a food contact surface sanitizer.
Every innovation faces struggles when bringing a product to market. Having launched the disinfectants at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the biggest challenge for Seventh Generation Professional was keeping up with an unprecedented need for disinfectants—an unusual problem to have for a new product, but not for the crazy year 2020.
“During the pandemic, our botanical disinfectants became highly sought after,” reports Bachofen. These new products were in high demand because not only are they made with an active botanical ingredient with no compromise on performance, but because they work. Customers can refer to EPA’s List N: Disinfectants for Coronavirus (COVID-19 virus).
“Demand for our disinfectants outpaced supply, which was compounded by a global shortage for triggers for the spray bottles and substrate for the wipes,” Bachofen claims. “We owe a tremendous amount of gratitude to our suppliers and supply chain teams who were resilient in helping us navigate these challenging circumstances throughout 2020 and 2021. We are happy that our product availability has fully recovered.”
Being that the performance of Seventh Generation Professional’s botanical disinfectants was quite strong in their first year, these recent additions have brought the company one step closer to fulfilling their mission.
End users have come to appreciate these new products. Seventh Generation Professional’s customers claim that they are cleaning more frequently due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and as a result, prefer using a botanical disinfectant made from essential oil.
As a testament to the product’s performance and benefits, the company even formed a multi-year partnership with both Aspen Snowmass Skiing Company and Alterra Mountain Company, which named Seventh Generation Professional’s botanical disinfectants as their “Official Front-of-House Cleaner and Disinfectant” in 2020.
Seventh Generation Professional is a valued member of ISSA. At last year’s ISSA Show North America 2020, held as a virtual event, the company’s botanical disinfectants were recognized and won the 2020 ISSA Innovation Award for the Cleaning Agents category.
“ISSA has been a tremendous partner for Seventh Generation Professional,” says Bachofen. “Last year was our second time exhibiting at the ISSA Trade Show, and even with a digital-only presence, we were able to showcase our mission, products, and innovations to the entire industrial and institutional cleaning industry. We were also grateful to see our botanical disinfectants win the ISSA Innovation Award for the Cleaning Agents category. Our ISSA membership has helped us connect with new customers and validate commercial cleaners that can be, and should be, designed with the well-being of people and the planet in mind. As we see it, this is the future.”
Seventh Generation Professional is a company with strong beliefs about the rights of people and the planet.
They believe a company’s values are as important as the products it makes. They have faith that their products can help transform the world into a healthy, sustainable, and equitable place for the next seven generations.
Therefore, they do business a little differently, and they wouldn’t have it any other way.
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