ICS Magazine

CRI amends Seal of Approval Program

April 9, 2007

Editor’s Note: The Carpet and Rug Institute today released the following letter to the industry concerning a recent amendment to the Seal of Approval Program. For more information contact the CRI at www.carpet-rug.org.

Dear Interested Parties:

Over the course of the last few weeks, The Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) has been working diligently through its various committees to improve our Seal of Approval (SOA) Program for truck mount extractors in an effort to be as inclusive as possible.

We understand the anxiety among some and will continue to try to resolve those concerns. We hope the majority of those involved will understand that we are trying to provide a testing program that is both fair and equitable. Our goal is to identify good cleaning products and make it easier for those using the products that work to differentiate themselves in the marketplace from those using less reputable products. CRI has reached out to many of those with legitimate concerns with our current program and included them in the decision making process as we move the SOA Extractor Program ahead.

The CRI Cleaning and Maintenance Issues Management Team (C&M IMT) has put together an amendment to our original SOA Program for extractors that will include three new categories with sub-groups in each of those categories as a way to offer more good cleaning products an avenue into the SOA Program. Again, the CRI goal is not to hamper those utilizing good cleaning products but rather enhance their efforts.

These new categories include: Older truck mount machines made by manufacturers already in the SOA; truck mount units from manufacturers that are no longer in business; and currently manufactured truck mount units from manufacturers not in the SOA Program.

Like any good testing program, we fully expect that our SOA Program will continue to evolve, and as it does, it will continue to identify quality products that will enhance the customer satisfaction in their carpet investments.

As the program has evolved, we have been disappointed to see that some manufacturers have attempted to circumvent both the letter and spirit of the program in order to get products and machines to pass. A considerable amount of time has been devoted to dealing with these issues. An outside review panel consisting of recognized experts in the cleaning industry has been organized and tasked with evaluating these situations and making recommendations on their appropriateness.

The overriding spirit of all CRI efforts is to better serve the consumer. The cleaning industry is a critical part of carpet manufacturers' efforts to improve consumer satisfaction with carpet. Your success is critical to our success.

We welcome your comments and will consider all constructive input. As stated above the SOA Programs will continue to evolve and, with your input, improve.


Werner H. Braun,
President, Carpet and Rug Institute

Carey Mitchell,
Chairman, Cleaning & Maintenance IMT