View Full Version : The Truth About Tom's of Maine and Greenwashing

08-02-11, 02:56 PM
Anthony Gucciardi
August 2, 2011

Tom’s of Maine has become a popular brand among health-conscious individuals who have used their purchasing power to push Tom’s into even the most mainstream grocery stores. Unfortunately, it appears that most of these consumers are unaware of who owns and operates Tom’s, what toxic ingredients are often found in Tom’s products, and the overall deception regarding the Tom’s of Maine brand name.

In fact, Tom’s of Maine isn’t even from Maine, and it’s owned by a well-known corporate giant — Colgate-Palmolive of New York. Purchasing an 84% stake in Tom’s back in 2006 (yes, they have owned Tom’s since 2006!) for 100 million dollars, Colgate-Palmolive’s share of the global toothpaste market has risen to 44%. In the United States alone, Colgate-Palmolive controls 35% of the market. Unfortunately, part of the companies success relies on a patented gingivitis formula which contains a toxic chemical substance called triclosan that reacts with the chlorine in tap water to become chloroform — a deadly chlorinated aromatic.

Shockingly, the result of the reaction is similar to the dioxins found in the compound Agent Orange that was responsible for 400,000 people being killed or maimed, and 500,000 children born with birth defects after being used in Vietnam by the U.S. military as a herbicide. This is the chemical reaction taking place in your mouth when using Tom’s “100% natural” gingivitis formula. Interestingly enough, Agent Orange was developed by the biotech company responsible for the rampant genetic modification of the world’s food supply — Monsanto.

Read more: http://naturalsociety.com/the-natural-truth-behind-toms-of-maine-products/

08-02-11, 03:22 PM
OK — I am not defending Tom's of Maine (although I will use their bug spray or another product in a pinch in an emergency) but this article is misleading.
The author in the second paragraph is talking about the parent company, Colgate and their use of triclosan.

But in the next paragraph talks about the Tom's gingivitis formula. I looked it up — it doesn't contain triclosan. They specifically say there is no triclosan in their product and also say they don't use it on their website. Here is the product description (marked the no triclosan with asterisks)
Product Description
Contains calcium for clean teeth and zinc citrate to help prevent plaque that leads to gingivitis. What is Natural Care? At Tom's of Maine, Natural Care is a way of life that guides what we make and all that we do. Our Natural Care products are made out of respect for you, your environment, and community. Active Ingredient: Zinc Citrate Trihydrate (2%): Purpose - Antigingivitis/Antiplaque, Source - Derived from purified zinc from the earth. Ingredient: Calcium Carbonate: Purpose - Mild abrasive, Source - Purified Calcium from the earth; Glycerin: Purpose - Moistener, Source - By-product of vegetable oil soap; Water: Purpose - Consistency, Source - Branch Brook; Xylitol: Purpose - Flavor, Source - Birch trees; Chamomile Extract: Purpose - Soothing feel, Source - Chamomile flowers (Matricaria Recutita); Sodium Lauryl Sulfate: Purpose - Dispersant, Source - Derived from coconut oil; Peppermint Oil: Purpose - Flavor, Source - Peppermint leaves (Mentha piperita); Carrageenan: Purpose - Thickener, Source - Seaweed (Chondrus crispus); Sodium Bicarbonate: Purpose - Mouth freshness, Source - Purified sodium bicarbonate from the earth; Myrrh Gum: Astringent feel, Source - Resin from the myrrh bush (Commiphora myrrh). *****This product contains no triclosan, ******no saccharin, no artificial sweeteners, no artificial preservatives, no artificial color or flavor and no animal ingredients. Tom's of Maine products are tested for safety without the use of animals. Fluoride-Free Formula: Some people do not want fluoride in their toothpaste. We produce fluoride-free toothpaste because we respect our customers' diverse needs and interests. Take the 5-Day Flavor Test: Our natural flavor comes from pure peppermint oils. It is never artificially sweetened with saccharin (400 times sweeter than sugar), so give your taste buds a chance to adjust. Use Tom's for 5 days. Then try your regular brand. We'll wager you'll stay with the clean, refreshing taste of Tom's.

Link saying what Tom's of Maine does not use in their products:

08-02-11, 03:41 PM
Thanks for clarifying Reesacat. I did not look it up :( I also added your reply to the FB post AND I commented under the original article. I usually double check things and this time I didn't...so again TY!

08-02-11, 03:45 PM
I almost didn't and then I wondered because the writing was kind of vague.
Left a note on Green Med Info with link about Tom's not using triclosan.

08-02-11, 03:54 PM
I'm glad to see that follow-up, Reesacat. Tom's had always been a good green product; I was afraid Colgate had frigged it up. Apparently they knew a good thing when they had it! Good for you for notifying GMI too.

08-02-11, 04:11 PM
Green Med Info posted on FB just now:
GreenMedInfo.com Colgate uses it. Colgate owns Tom's. Tom's does not use it.

08-02-11, 07:14 PM
I had posted a comment under the original article using Reesacat's comments (I said from a friend). I just got this via email:

Thanks for your comment on the Tom's article. I have corrected the mistakes you mentioned, as the research I was going by was dated before the removal of triclosan. Thanks again!

Anthony Gucciardi

08-02-11, 07:16 PM
Good work, team!!

08-02-11, 08:21 PM
SayerJi and Anthony G. have earned my respect -- they clarified/changed the errors and were very prompt and courteous.
Everyone wins! That 'other website' should take notes....