Greenwash Alert – SC Johnson Named A ‘Top Green Brand’


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I wish I were joking but sadly I am not. SC Johnson, the brand well-known around the world for bringing us such “green” products as Raid bug killer, Glade “air freshener”, Ziploc plastic bags, and Drano, has been picked as one of the 10 greenest brands by the ImagePower Global Green Brands Survey. Yes, you read that right — a company selling household products made of toxic chemicals has been named of the TOP 10 greenest companies in the entire world by the very consumers who buy their products. Talk about successful marketing and a PR score above all others! Now they can spend the next 12 months telling consumers about how “green” they are while continuing to sell us products full of dangerous chemicals.

The Environmental Working group says that SC Johnson’s 28 skincare-related products alone contain 69 ingredients, which can variably cause organ system toxicity neurotoxicity, endocrine disruption, and biochemical or cellular level changes in our bodies. It is also mentioned at EWG that SC Johnson continues to test on animals. And has a petition on their site asking SC Johnson to stop using the toxic trespassers galaxolide and tonalide, synthetic musks in fragrances, which are linked to increased risk of breast cancer and hormone disruption that are showing up in our blood, breast milk, and even newborns. Sure sounds like a “green” company to me; how does it sound to you?

While SC Johnson has been (ridiculously) named a Top Green Brand, there are a few notable mention on the list that actually do deserve to be there. Here are the Top 10 2011 US ImagePower Global Green Brands:

  1. Seventh Generation
  2. Whole Foods
  3. Tom’s of Maine
  4. Burt’s Bees
  5. Trader Joe’s
  6. The Walt Disney Company
  7. S.C. Johnson
  8. Dove
  9. Apple
  10. Starbucks, Microsoft (tied)

Sadly, the inclusion of a company like SC Johnson on the list means that consumers are falling for the brilliantly greenwashed marketing campaigns that these companies put together. Including a company which makes toxic products that can cause cancer on a list dedicated to “green” brands is an incredibly display of ignorance. Let’s hope consumers don’t continue to fall for this ruse being perpetrated by SC Johnson.

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  1. As far as I know, I’d not have included TJs or WF in this list either. I know that both companies choose to sell non-green if it brings them more $$$ no questions asked.

  2. Unbelievable how something like this could happen. All the more reason we have to do our own homework-educate ourselves and make our own decision rather than relying on big box recommendations. Amazing how far deep pockets can get you. Thanks for the great post.

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