Sustainable consumption

Promoting sustainable consumption of cleaning products  

One of A.I.S.E.’s key priorities is to steer the sustainable development agenda and reduce the environmental footprint linked to the production and consumption of detergents and maintenance products. To achieve this goal, A.I.S.E. runs a broad range of activities such as voluntary Product Stewardship Programmes, but also, the comprehensive A.I.S.E. Charter for Sustainable Cleaning which is implemented by more than 200 companies in Europe. Full details of current detergent industry sustainability initiatives are available here.

A.I.S.E. believes that a science-based approach, incorporating the full product life cycle is essential to make progress and move towards sustainability.  
Life cycle analysis shows that most detergent and cleaning products have the biggest impact on the environment when they are used, mainly because of the energy and water needed to do the laundry or wash dishes. That’s why A.I.S.E. actively encourages more sustainable consumption by consumers and professional users of detergents and cleaning products.In addition, the industry conducts consumer habits surveys targeting European consumers regularly. Results show that there is a great potential for improvement in terms of, for example dosage, wash load or washing at low temperature.                         

Read more: download the A.I.S.E. factsheet on low temperature washing (Dec 2017)

The following initiatives are ongoing (some since 1997), making the detergent and cleaning products sector a pioneer in the field of pan-European industry-led campaigns to promote the sustainable consumption of its products.

Cleanright best use panels & on-pack information

On billions of detergents and cleaning product packaging across Europe and via the website, consumers obtain easy-to-understand tips and pictograms on how to save energy, water, CO2 and money while cleaning. Those tips were developed by A.I.S.E. and are available to all industry players to ensure consistent information of consumers. 

Developed per product category, the "Best Use Cleanright Panels” are available for laundry detergents, automatic and manual dishwashing detergents, all purpose cleaners, trigger sprays and other consumer products. A similar set of panels exists for professional users to promote the sustainable use of biocides. Companies may download them here, free of charge, for use on their product labels. 
All Cleanright Best Use Panels consistently point to the consumer portal. Developed by A.I.S.E. in 2004, Cleanright is the place to go in Europe for consumers looking for clear and accessible information on cleaning products and their safe and sustainable use. Available in 25 languages, the portal reaches out to over 500 million European citizens and has more than 300,000

Targeted campaigns (including 'I prefer 30°' Low Temperature Washing) 

The ‘Washright’ campaign was the very first initiative developed by the detergent industry to promote the sustainable use of laundry detergents. Initiated in 1998, it ran for several years and shared targeted key messages with consumers in the EU 15 (at that time). This campaign received very positive feedback from UNEP and various European and national stakeholders. 

Watch videos of the Washright campaign here. Access an overview of activities that A.I.S.E. and its network executed at the time here.

Since then, many other campaigns have taken place successfully, for instance to support the Product Resource Efficiency Projects which encourage consumers to dose their detergents correctly. 

This link provides an overview of adverts used to promote adequate dosage of compacted products and resource efficiency in various EU countries and languages.

In 2013, A.I.S.E. and its national associations launched a campaign called "I prefer 30°"; this one was launched in 2013 for B2B, and in 2014 for B2C in 5 countries. The initiative aimed to promote more sustainable use of household laundry detergents. The objective is to focus on saving energy through low temperature washing (which is the most promising area of potential environmental savings), by raising consumer awareness of the benefits of washing at low temperatures. The new concept of the "I prefer 30°” campaign is that it has been open to retailers, appliance manufacturers, fashion manufacturers/retailers, authorities, NGOs and other corporate supporters, making it a unique multi-stakeholder movement. More than 30 partners joined this initiative which gained a lot of support notably from former European Commissioner for Climate Action Connie Hedegaard and many other partners.

For more information, please visit, or download the campaign summary presentation here.

'I prefer 30°' Low temperature washing campaign (December 2015 update)

Close-out report: IP30° wave 1 (2013-2014)

As part of its commitment under the first Wave of the campaign, A.I.S.E. is delighted to publish the I prefer 30° Wave 1 close-out report, summarizing the different activities undertaken by A.I.S.E.’s National Associations and the various partner organizations in all five participating countries (Belgium, Denmark, France, Italy and UK). The key achievements of the campaign were the excellent collaboration across A.I.S.E. and its network, and the unique collaboration across the extended value chain of multiple stakeholders. 
The close out report includes an Executive Summary as well as individual country reports/annexes, highlighting achievements and learnings of the campaign. 

The report is available in the following formats:

  • IP30° close out report – complete, including all 5 countries & annexes (183 pages) To access the full report, please click here

Opening of IP30° wave 2 (2015-2016)

On 2 November 2015, A.I.S.E. launched to detergent companies and suppliers to the sector a call for interest, for feedback by 1 December 2015, for the roll-out of a possible Wave 2 of the I prefer 30° campaign, with B2C activation between 1 Jan and 31 Dec 2016. On 14 December 2015, A.I.S.E. confirmed that the campaign will be extended in the following countries: Belgium, Denmark, France and United Kingdom.
The principle of the campaign, namely to continue capitalizing on the toolkit through a multi-stakeholder campaign – mirroring Wave 1 – will re-apply. 

The I prefer 30° Wave 2 documentation is now available and includes:

  • Commitment letters for campaign Partners/Supporters:
Core Campaign Leaders
    - Addendum (for companies who took part in Wave 1)
    Commitment letter (for NEW campaign partners)

Corporate Supporters
    - Addendum (for companies who took part in Wave 1)
    Commitment letter (for NEW campaign partners)

Gold Partners 
    Commitment letter (for NEW campaign partners)
- Email to A.I.S.E. (for EXISTING campaign partners)

Institutional Supporters
  - Email to A.I.S.E. (for NEW & EXISTING campaign partners)

For more information on "I prefer 30° Wave 2”, please consult the full project description above. If you wish to participate, please return the commitment letter signed, with annexes filled in, to the A.I.S.E. team (contact: Christine Boudet, Boulevard du Souverain 165, 1160 Brussels, Belgium). 

More information about A.I.S.E.’s voluntary initiatives relevant to consumers and professional users here.