New Age Detergent Pods Stopping Plastic Waste and Scoring High on Sustainability and Performance

Vinodhini Harish

12 Mar 2024

Detergent pods are pre-measured, easy to use and they perform well. Under-dosing is a common problem faced due to hard-to-read measuring lids. Although the cleaning ingredients are the same in both the liquid detergent and laundry pods, consumers celebrate them as they cut down the hassle of measuring liquid detergent every time, and cut down the mess as they load the washing machine. In this article, we have covered two of the latest inventions in laundry pods by some renowned specialty chemicals companies. We are excited to share their movement towards bringing sustainable products to the Indian market. Let’s begin.

Current scenario of the Indian market on laundry solutions:

The Indian market has experienced notably fewer laundry solutions and the market has been largely dominated by laundry bars and powders. Specialty chemical companies are focusing on laundry products with better performance, higher washing efficiency, and promoting healthy laundry practices.

The laundry specialists understand that washing performance relies on mechanical operation, chemical action, energy output and temperature variations. Therefore the leading market players have come up with innovations, and ideas driven by environmental policies and the goal of producing pollution-free, environmentally friendly laundry solutions.

Stringent governmental norms and an increasing number of eco-conscious consumers have stimulated the demand for greener alternatives. The prevailing challenge is that the laundry detergent intermediates are derived from petroleum products, they are rich carbon contributors. Thus, several leading companies have been working on deriving laundry solutions from biodegradable ingredients such as natural washing soda, coconut oil, plant-based enzymes, mineral-based surfactants, zeolites, and so on. The trend is continuing with growing technological advancements and better access to raw materials.

The COVID-19 pandemic made a few corrections to the goal:

Detergents have very less to do with sterilization, but COVID has ushered the need to combine disinfectants with detergents that could effectively remove pathogenic microbes, yet safe or non-toxic for the user. The challenge may sound simple, but it is not so. Removing or controlling microbe population or viruses like COVID-19 is not simple, because they are not alive, they exist in their dormant stage for fairly longer periods (weeks). They wait till they come in contact with the host and then they replicate or do the damage.

Thus, the laundry solutions such as surfactants, halogens, phenolics, alkylating agents, and alcohols are preferred.

It is important to note that some disinfectants are not appropriate for home settings. Those disinfectants are used in professional settings and are not biodegradable, thus they cause health issues if used in smaller settings or home settings.

Inventions that are highly sustainable and environmentally friendly:
  1. Galaxy Hearth mixes laundry pods – an impressive invention by Galaxy surfactants:

Galaxy Hearth mixes laundry pods range encompasses critical elements like safety, sustainability, value enhancement, flexibility and customizability. Galaxy Hearth laundry pods are powered by Plant-based surfactants.

Plant-based surfactants- Why are they so beneficiary?

Now the big advantage of using natural or plant-based surfactants is that they are abundantly found in nature, cheaper during extraction, energy saving, bio-degradable and have minimal effect on dye and functional finish when applied on fabrics. Above all, they are extracted from renewable and sustainable sources. Also, they are easily broken down in nature when they come in contact with natural water bodies like rivers, lakes, etc. It doesn’t cause alarming levels of water pollution or eutrophication.

The concoction in these ready mix laundry detergent pods is carefully designed to deliver enhanced performance, adequate wetting, excellent cleansing, and detergency of solid fabrics.

The concoction is described to deliver supreme detergency against powders, and even commercially available pods. They have scored in other areas such as aesthetically pleasing, convenient, machine-friendly, biodegradable and highly sustainable.

Galaxy Hearth also includes sustainable solutions for homecare applications like dishwashers, hard surface care, institutional and industrial cleaning, laundry solutions and other home care products. The prime goal is to enhance the performance and safety of the consumers.

These ingredients are cruelty-free, and all the products are bio-degradable and compatible with new-age formats.
  1. Unilever launches most powerful and sustainable laundry capsules:

Unilever has converted its packaging from plastic to cardboard and the capsule membrane is fully biodegradable and dissolves more quickly than its competitive ones. On their official website, when mentioning their innovation, they have stated that the active ingredients are 65% derived from plant sources and have been optimized to deliver quality cleaning performance even in cold and short laundry cycles.

The research supports that the Unilever laundry detergent pods have reduced carbon footprint by 16% when compared to other capsules available in the market and leave no residue on the laundry.

Truly, the product is an impeccable example of “Unilever’s Clean Future Strategy”.

Unilever has proudly committed to delivering sustainable, clean products and announced in September 2020 and has been working towards that mission. They aim to fundamentally change how the industry works in terms of cleaning and manufacturing process of laundry products. They have also backed the idea with an investment of 1 billion euros.

Take away:

When a new invention enters the market, it tends to prompt questions from people. Some of the specialty chemical companies have worked immensely on formulations to bring out first-grade performance in detergency against detergent powders and bars. Alongside laundry solutions, these companies have also worked on other segments of home care products to incorporate naturally derived ingredients and practices that cause less impact on the environment and carbon footprint.

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