Document Type

Research Paper


When you wash your clothes, you choose a detergent that touts itself as an eco-friendly detergent. After all, why not help the environment with your everyday activities? You've just seen an ad for a new Tide product called Free and Gentle, a Proctor and Gamble creation, telling you all about how great Tide is for the environment. So you go to the store and spend the average $12 on a bottle that gets you approximately 30 loads. When you look at the back of the bottle, you don't see a list of ingredients, but if the commercial says it's good for the environment, you're sure it is. The product states that it is free of harmful chemicals and scents that can cause irritation. Unfortunately, Proctor & Gamble exaggerates those claims, and when it comes to some products, including Tide Free and Gentle laundry detergent as will be seen, they are guilty of Greenwashing. Greenwashing, according to The Triple Bottom Line, a book that defines the pillars of sustainability as people, profits, and the planet, by Andrew Savitz, is defined as “a kind of corporate image-laundering in regard to the environment" (Savitz, Lr Weber, 2006 pg. 136). In the easiest terms. Greenwashing occurs when marketers make claims about a product's environmental attributes that are false or cannot be verified. Whether it be chemical ingredients, the amount of liquid used for proper efficiency, or unsubstantiated claims that improperly put Tide ahead of its competitors, there is really only one reason Tide can say it is better than the rest, and that is because it is designed to be easier on machines. Overall, it would seem that Proctor & Gamble know how to Greenwash a consumer into buying their "eco-friendly" products rather than providing a detergent that is truly "green".



Subjects - Topical (LCSH)

Green marketing; Deceptive advertising


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Subjects - Names (LCNAF)

Procter & Gamble Company









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