Development and use of microbial-based cleaning products (MBCPs): Current issues and knowledge gaps

George Arvanitakis, Robin Temmerman, Armin Spök

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Cleaning products containing microbes as active ingredients are becoming increasingly prevalent as an alternative to chemical-based cleaning products. These microbial-based cleaning products (MBCPs) are being used in domestic and commercial settings (i.e., households and businesses) and institutional settings (e.g., hospitals, schools, etc.), in a variety of cleaning activities (hard surface cleaning, odour control, degreasing, septic tank treatments, etc.). They are typically described as "environmentally friendly" and "non-toxic". Publicly available information sources (scientific literature, patent databases, commercial websites) were searched for information on microbial species contained in MBCPs, their mode of action, cleaning applications in which they are used, and their potential impacts on human health and the environment. Although information was found providing a broad indication of microbial genera/species used, information on specific species/strains and quantities produced and sold is generally lacking. This makes it difficult to conduct a meaningful examination of any risks to human health and the environment from the production and use of MBCPs and to determine how effective current policies and regulatory frameworks are in addressing these issues. These and other challenges were addressed at an international workshop in Ottawa, Canada in June 2013 by a number of stakeholders, including industry, government, academic and non-governmental organizations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-9
Number of pages7
JournalFood and Chemical Toxicology
Volume116
Issue numberA
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2018
Externally publishedYes

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cleaning agents
Cleaning
Literature
cleaning
Health
Canada
Industry
Organizations
Databases
human health
Education
odor control
septic systems
nongovernmental organizations
patents
Septic tanks
information sources
active ingredients
Odor control
Surface cleaning

Keywords

  • Bacteria
  • Biodegradation, Environmental
  • Biological Factors
  • Biotechnology
  • Canada
  • Detergents
  • Humans
  • Quality Control
  • Journal Article

Fields of Expertise

  • Human- & Biotechnology

Cite this

Development and use of microbial-based cleaning products (MBCPs) : Current issues and knowledge gaps. / Arvanitakis, George; Temmerman, Robin; Spök, Armin.

In: Food and Chemical Toxicology, Vol. 116, No. A, 06.2018, p. 3-9.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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