A year after moving its annual meeting
from Boca Raton to the Grande Lakes Orlando Resort, ACI enhanced the meeting
experience with more speaker sessions, a
new member reception, a hospitality bar,
charity events and real time access to registration lists.
“It’s the right place for the household
and industrial and institutional industry to
meet on the relevant issues,” insisted Col-
gate’s Jack DiMaggio, chairman of the ACI
convention committee.“There is a lot of re-
turn on investment and business-to-
The speakers who followed DiMaggio
reiterated the value of ACI membership by
ticking off the benefits of a host of programs
and services available to members.
For example, in noting that ACI’s brand
promise is “Improving Lives,” Arylessence’s Bob Sansone reviewed how the
Institute is getting the word out about the
benefits of ACI’s products via several partnerships with key groups including American Society for Microbiology, Centers for
Disease Control and National Education
Association. Moreover, through vehicles
such as newsletters, websites, a national
conference and other programs, ACI’s
message reaches 11 million consumers.
Finally, the new“For Better Living”30-
minute video communicates how the industry contributes to society.
ACI continues to be recognized as the
media’s go-to source on cleaning product
industry issues and trends, according to
Procter & Gamble’s Ross Holthouse of the
ACI communications committee. During
the past year, ACI’s outreach program extended beyond traditional media such as
television, radio and print to include email,
RSS feeds and social media platforms like
LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.
Last year, ACI was mentioned or
quoted in 1,834 articles, and among analyzed articles, 97% of them were positive.
Holthouse noted that there was positive
coverage on the greater availability of information on cleaning product ingredients
in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The Baltimore Sun and The
Philadelphia Inquirer as well as by the Asso-
Jack DiMaggio, Colgate-Palmolive, chairman
of the ACI convention committee.
ciated Press. At the same time, ACI defended
the industry’s position regarding antibacterial products and ingredients, as well as
promoted the use of cleaning products
through its cleaning surveys, via NBC News,
The Washington Post, The Boston Globe and
other media outlets.
AkzoNobel’s Donna Hillebold of ACI’s research, technology and regulation committee reviewed several regulatory issues that
could impact the industry.
First up was the Safer Consumer Product Alternatives (AB 1879), which is part of
California’s Green Chemistry Initiative
(GCI). If passed, the regulation would build
upon current environmental protection
laws to shift the focus from cradle to grave
regulation to up-front design and prevention of harm.
Since ACI began submitting comments
at each step of the regulatory process, the
Department of Toxic Substances Control
(DTSC) has dramatically shifted its positions following the release of every variant
to the regulations, according to Hillebold.
In January, DTSC put the regulation on
hold pending a meeting of the Green Ribbon Science Panel.
Also under California’s GCI, the Institute has submitted comments regarding
the California Office of Environmental
Health Assessment (OEHHA) Hazard
Trait regulation (SB 509). If passed, the bill
would require OEHHA to specify the hazard traits, environmental and toxicological end-points, and other relevant data
that are to be included in the state’s Toxics Information Clearinghouse.
On the“green” front, Hillebold noted
that two trends are emerging: a move from
environmentally preferable products (EPPs)
to sustainability and the growth of ecola-beling, where more than 500 programs are
in place in the U.S., Europe and Asia.
Unfortunately, according to Hillebold,
both trends are confusing to consumers
and industry. She noted that many labeling
systems place unreasonable restrictions on
ingredients such as enzymes and antimicrobials. Therefore, the challenge to industry is to convince regulators and NGOs to
put sustainability ahead of single ingredient restrictions in their programs. (ACI’s
position on EPPs is available online at
In defense of antimicrobial ingredients,
ACI met with aides to Congressman Edward Markey to discuss the very science he
questioned in 2010 letters to EPA and FDA.
At the same time, ACI is coordinating the
industry’s response to EPA’s call for input
on the safety and efficacy of triclosan.
Mike Prentiss of P&G provided an update on activities that fall under the scope
of ACI’s government affairs committee. Key
among these is ACI’s position that while
the Toxic Substances and Control Act
(TSCA) should be updated, industry must
maintain its ability to innovate and speed
products to market.
Prentiss noted that TSCA is 35 years old
and needs updating, observing that
REACH and the Canadian Chemical Management systems are newer models.
Neither a House (HR5820) nor Senate
(S3209) bill moved last year, despite Democratic control of Congress. Prentiss called
both bills detrimental to industry interests.
To ensure that its voice is heard, industry
formed the American Alliance for Innovation (AAI), a 100-plus trade association
coalition, where ACI serves on the steering committee.