The U.S. Environmental Protection (EPA) is recognizing 18 Safer Choice Partner of the Year Award winners across 10 states and Washington, D.C., including two from  Illinois: Jelmar and Purpose Built Brands.

The Safer Choice award recognizes achievement in the design, manufacture, selection, and use of products with safer chemicals which furthers outstanding or innovative source reduction. The Safer Choice program helps consumers and purchasers for facilities, such as schools and office buildings, find products that perform and are safer for human health and the environment. 

“EPA’s Safer Choice program recognizes businesses that help make it easier for consumers to find products that are safer for communities and the environment,” says regional administrator Kurt Thiede. “The work of Jelmar and PurposeBuilt Brands highlights the important role that companies have in educating the public and making these environmentally-friendly products available.” 

Jelmar, a woman-owned cleaning product manufacturer, is being recognized as an outstanding Safer Choice Formulator-Product Manufacturer. This is the sixth consecutive year the company is being recognized as a part of the program. Jelmar includes the Safer Choice label on the front of its Safer Choice-designated products and features it in promotional content and efforts to demonstrate its commitment to making products with safer ingredients. Jelmar manufactures a total of 20 product types across its consumer and professional lines of products, 11 of which are Safer Choice-certified products.  

“It’s an honor to be recognized as a 2020 EPA Safer Choice Partner of the Year Award winner,” said Alison Gutterman, CEO and President of Jelmar. “We have been committed partners with the EPA since 2005 and strive to evolve and develop our products with the safety of the environment and our customers’ front of mind. While using EPA-approved ingredients, we’ve continued to maintain a standard of strong and effective products.” 

PurposeBuilt Brands, a cleaning product manufacturer, is being recognized for a 2019 corporate-wide sustainability initiative that highlighted their new Safer Choice partnership as an essential component. PurposeBuilt evaluated all products in their seven consumer brand portfolios to determine which products could be submitted as Safer Choice “as is” and which needed to be reformulated for submission. Throughout 2019, they reformulated numerous products and had three products certified as Safer Choice. PurposeBuilt Brands featured the Safer Choice label prominently on the front packaging of these certified products and on e-commerce channels.