by Leon Mengri
February 22, 2019
Organizations and households are increasingly paying attention to the types of cleaning chemicals they use due to concerns about toxicity and environmental impact. Contract cleaning firms are sensitive to client concerns about cleaning chemicals, because they have to compete strongly to win contracts in a fragmented industry with many participants.
The perception of safety is particularly important for clients such as households, offices, and schools, as they are considered relatively intimate spaces where people spend lots of time in one place close together. Concerns regarding the safety of cleaning chemicals revolve around the health and environmental effects of the substances composing the powders or solutions. For example, some products release fumes that can cause headaches, while others may damage the skin or eyes, are potential carcinogens, or may cause reproductive or developmental harm.
One relatively easy option for improving the environmental friendliness and safety of cleaning services is to use fluids featuring the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Safer Choice label. Manufacturers may use the label if their formulation is considered less toxic for humans, pets, and the environment relative to existing products available as a result of testing and research by the EPA and have proved their efficacy in performance tests so users do not compromise on quality.
Some cleaning service providers that wish to go the extra mile are opting to begin exploring investments in electrolyzed water cleaning systems, which are electric machines that take water and produce acid and alkaline solutions capable of eliminating common bacteria, viruses, and fungi. The systems are installed on-site in the building to be cleaned so cleaning firms can eliminate the need to transport cleaning fluid.
According to a white paper by ABM Industrial – a leading provider of contract cleaning services – electrolyzed water is recognized by the EPA and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) for use as a disinfectant. ABM Industrial is installing units in some of the buildings it cleans; cleaning workers fill various types of bottles and containers with the electrolyzed water produced and use it to clean throughout a building, including work areas, bathrooms, kitchens, floors, counters, etc.
In addition, some firms are also offering clients a more holistic approach to environmentally friendly cleaning services. Such programs go beyond using less toxic cleaning chemicals, considering such factors as the types of vacuums used and air quality. For example, ABM Industrial advertises a GreenCare program, while Jani-King International – another leading provider of contract cleaning services – offers a Green Cleaning Service. Specifically, Jani-King International’s Green Cleaning Service includes the use of environmentally preferable products throughout the cleaning process and vacuums with HEPA filters, among other considerations.
It’s clear that environmental concerns and worries about the toxicity of chemicals are becoming increasingly important, and companies that are proactive about developing green cleaning options can give themselves a boost in attracting new business and retaining existing clients.
For more insights into the US contract cleaning services industry, see Contract Cleaning Services: United States, a report published by the Freedonia Focus Reports division of The Freedonia Group. This report forecasts to 2023 US contract cleaning service revenues in nominal US dollars. Total revenues are segmented by service type in terms of:
Total demand is also segmented by market as follows:
To illustrate historical trends, total revenues, the various segments, the number of employer firms, employer establishments, employment, and nonemployer establishments are provided in annual series from 2008 to 2018.
This report represents the revenues of employer and nonemployer firms. Excluded from the scope of this report are services conducted by an in-house staff and other building maintenance services such as landscaping, pest control, and security.
Key macroeconomic indicators are also provided with quantified trends. Other various topics, including profiles of pertinent leading suppliers, are covered in this report. A full outline of report items by page is available in the Table of Contents.
Related Focus Reports include:
Leon Mengri is a Senior Market Research Analyst with Freedonia Focus Reports. He conducts research and writes a variety of Focus Reports, which offer concise overviews of market size, product segmentation, business trends, and more.
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