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How To Produce Liquid Household Cleaning Products

Advice by Shawn Theunissen on how to produce liquid household cleaning products.

Shawn Theunissen




I want to start a company producing liquid household cleaning products. I want to know do’s and don’ts. Should I have certain certificate and which government policies should I need to know?

As you starting a manufacturing business of producing household cleaning products, you should consider the location and market for your products.

Household cleaning products are of a specific form and nature, which require that you develop technical knowledge of formulations and quality to differentiate the products.

Depending on the scale of production, you may need to consider start-up cost involved in manufacturing of your cleaning products.

Related: MLM Cleaning Products Sample Business Plan

Create a budget that takes consideration of direct cost and overhead expenses.

How to start

There are a few doors that you could consider as a start up in entering this type of business. The options may be

  1. Purchasing the raw materials and mixing them yourself using the various standardised formulae given in order to package and sell.
  2. Buying heavy duty concentrates that you need only to mix in dilutions one or a few items like water/ other to create the household chemical – this option also requires mixing machinery for most chemicals but excludes major raw material mixing inaccuracies that may come to the fold in self mixes.
  3. Buying a distributor franchise that helps you set up a small to medium scale manufacture that can operate from a specific jurisdictional region.

The quality of your products will be determined raw materials formulae and equipment to manufacture the products.

Related: 21 Steps To Start-Up

This involves sourcing of credible material suppliers with green or earth friendly cleaning chemicals.


The Do’s

  • Do the research as what household chemicals you will start off with. This need not be a large offering as you enter the market – so get a feel of what is needed and most cost effective to produce to give you initial sales and returns.
  • Get the accredited training and certification – many accredited training providers will also provide access to their approved raw materials and machinery suppliers while also give you ongoing technical and business support as you set up.
  • There are companies who will offer an initial starter kit and manuals that have all you need to get the first few batches off the ground depending which option you choose. This may be worthwhile as they help the start up to benchmark, label and cost the product to retail to market.
  • Package and brand your product to appeal to you intended audience. Also note that customers may need labelling that have more detail than the name of chemical.
  • Prepare a material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) on your products which tells on what chemical components are included in the chemicals as well as their impact to health and environment. Also included in the MSDS is how to store, dispose, dilute and use of chemical. This information can be supplied with any readymade formulation purchase or produced by a chemist.
  • Market and sell your unique products and create the sales and ensure control of your quality. 

Related: How do I start a cleaning company in South Africa?

The Don’ts

  • Do not attempt to manufacture and retail chemicals without prior knowledge and training.
  • Selling untested chemical recipes that may change along your sales path is an absolute NO – stability of your chemicals will be key and this is dependent on your formulation mixed correctly!
  • Do not initially select a bouquet of chemicals to manufacture and retail that will require permits and handling licences without having undergone the accredited training, consultations and procedural process of ticking all the boxes in the legalities department for permits/ handling licences.
  • Buying of some junk or pirate chemical formulae can lead to low quality product. Get those who know to assist with technical and quality control support and hold your hand going forward.

Related: The Complete How-To Guide for Starting a Car Wash

Keep these policies in mind

  • There are no governmental policies to adhere to when producing entry level basic non-hazardous household chemicals except that, it may be that in some cases that you will need to adhere to local municipal bylaws that may dictate the storage and disposal of certain harsh chemicals that you use.
  • Some corrosive natured chemical like Bleach will require you to obtain chemical handling license and other relevant permits where applicable.
  • In starting this kind of business, you would need to protect your business and have a registered company, as well as have the necessary legal and health permits to start the business.
  • If your route is to manufacture and retail your products to major retail shops that require certifications – you must comply with the relevant SABS approved standards.
  • Adhere to adequate proper labelling and packaging suitable for the chemical type.
  • Always be aware of the impact of your business to the people and environment.

If you acquire more information on how to start a household cleaning manufacturing business visit online at

Related: 6 Resources For Start-ups Looking For Funding

Shawn Theunissen is head of Corporate Social Responsibility at Growthpoint Properties and the founder and manager of Property Point, Growthpoint Properties’ enterprise development programme. Shawn’s diverse enterprise development expertise includes designing and implementing business support services; creating market linkages between SMEs and large corporate entities; and providing capacity building support, and process and learning journey facilitation. For more information visit

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Mpumelelo Dlamini

    Jul 28, 2016 at 14:41

    Hi Shawn
    Thanks a million times for your response I will continue to do more research as I have began with my business plan for this business.

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Start-up Industry Specific

How To Start A Farming Business

Keep these nine points in mind when launching your new farming business.




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Start-up Industry Specific

How Do I Start A Security Company In South Africa?

There are two kinds of security companies, one that sells products and one that sells services or you can combine both.





To start a security service company in South Africa you must register with the Private Security Regulatory Authority (SIRA). There are two kinds of security companies, one that sells products and one that sells services or you can combine both. It is estimated that the private security industry in South Africa employs over 400 000 individuals.

If you’re looking at starting a security guard company in South Africa, the following guide will be able to assist you in the deciding if it’s the right decision for you.

You need a lot of capital

Starting a security business requires a good deal of capital outlay and it’s highly recommended that one should have a background in this field.

Decide what kind of company you want to start

There are two kinds of security companies, one that sells products and one that sells services or you can combine both. Each sector falls under its own regulatory body.

What about area competition?

Greg Margolis is the CEO of NYPD Security, a niche security company that has operated for the last five years in the leafy northern suburbs of Johannesburg.

“To run your own security service company I think that you have to be well rounded in terms of not just being a good business person, but you also have to be a people person, a marketing person and know a good deal about the business.

“There’s tough competition, but I love what I do and wouldn’t sell my business even if I was offered triple what its worth. I am passionate about what I do”, says Margolis.

Starting a Security Services Business

To start a security service company in South Africa you must register with the Private Security Regulatory Authority (PSIRA). This includes paying a registration fee of R2 280 and writing an exam. Once you have passed the exam, proved that you do not have a criminal record, SIRA will conduct an inspection to establish whether or not your business meets the infrastructure requirements. A further fee of R1 710 is charged for the assessment. Each year the business is re-accessed which costs a further R500 plus the annual renewal fee or R520.

The following documentation is required for registration:

  1. An authenticated copy of the CM1, CM2, CM27, CM29, CM31 and CM 46 (apply at Registrar of Companies or Attorneys), if the applicant is a company;
  2. An authenticated copy of the Partnership Agreement if the applicant is a partnership;
  3. An authenticated copy of the trust deed and the letter of authorisation to the trustees from the Master of the High Court if the applicant is a business trust

Related:Steps for Setting the Right Prices for Your Security Business

Also required:

  1. The Suretyship form (SIRA 4) to be signed by the natural person who has taken full responsibility of the security business
  2. Every director, member, partner (as the case may be) applying for registration as a security business must have successfully completed, at a training establishment accredited in terms of law, at least, the training courses Grade E to B
  3. An authenticated copy of the Tax Clearance Certificate from the South African Revenue Service (SARS)
  4. An authenticated copy of the VAT Registration Number from SARS.
  5. An authenticated copy of the PAYE number from SARS
  6. An authenticated copy of the COID number (Compensation for Occupational Injuries & Diseases) from the Department of Labour
  7. Sufficient information in writing to enable the Authority to ascertain that the applicant security business meets the requirements with regard to the infrastructure and capacity necessary to render a security service;

This include, inter alia, the following:

  1. Submit a business plan to the Authority including the location and activities
  2. A resolution by the applicant security business stating that it will be able to operate for the next year
  3. The applicant proves that it has an administrative office that is accessible to the inspectors of the SIRA
  4. The applicant must have equipment which is necessary for the management and administration of the security business, e.g. fixed telephone, fax machine, a hard copy or electronic filing system for the orderly keeping of all records and documentation
  5. Show that the affairs of the applicant security business are managed and controlled by appropriately experienced, trained and skilled persons
  6. The applicant security business has at its disposal a sufficient number of registered and appropriately trained and skilled security officers for the rendering of a security service for which it has contracted or is likely to contract
  7. The security officers must be properly controlled and supervised
  8. The applicant security officer has at its disposal sufficient and adequately skilled administrative staff members for the administration of the affairs of the applicant
  9. The business must have has all the necessary equipment, including vehicles,  uniforms, clothing and equipment that must be issued to its security officers
  10. The applicant security business is in lawful possession of the firearms and other weapons that are necessary offer security services in respect of which it has contracted.

Related: Get going with a One Page Business Plan

Landing contracts


The most important thing you can do to start and operate your own business is to develop a good business plan.

It’s invaluable because the business plan forces you to come to terms with your business. Selling the business concept seems to the problem, said Margolis. These are his five tips that will help to get the business going.

“The security industry in South Africa is very competitive. You have to get out there and you have to keep knocking on doors, there isn’t an easy solution”, explains Margolis.

Top Tips

1. Look at your business plan and decide if you have a competitive advantage. If not, work out how you can make the market understand the unique value your small business has to offer.

2. It is important to make yourself known. It isn’t difficult or expensive to increase awareness about the business. Attend ratepayer meetings, spend time at the local police stations, and attend meetings the police have with residents and businesses in the area. This way people get to know you and respect you and half the battle is won. Networking is the way to go.

3. It’s my experience that bigger companies are reluctant to give security contracts to a company that is a one-man show. Make sure that you have a structure in place. Clients need to know if something happens to you, the business will not fall apart, and the services they have paid for and you have agreed to supply, will not cease. Clients need to understand that besides experience, that you are credible and that all the checks and balances are in place. This must be one of the key selling points.

4. Consider taking on a partner. Choose a partner who has the attributes that you lack. The ideal partner would be one with strong links and contacts in the community that you want to work with. Let your partner control the selling side while you handle areas you’re strong in, such as expertise and service delivery. The other option is to employ sales staff.

5. Stay abreast of new trends in the field, and update your skills. This is something that I strongly believe in. You have to be well rounded in terms of not just being a good businessperson, but you also have to be a people person, a marketing and sales manager and know a good deal about the neighbourhoods you work.


Are you new to starting a business? Read 15 Things Every Newbie Needs to Know About Starting a Business

Security products

What are the requirements to start a security product supplier business?

If you are starting a security company that sells electronic alarm systems and other security products it’s wise to become a member of SAIDSA in order to provide your business with the credibility it needs to be taken seriously by the public and security service providers.

The objective of SAIDSA is to upgrade the quality and standards of electronic security and to protect the public from unscrupulous, “fly-by-night” operators. When a security system is purchased, an ongoing relationship is entered into between the purchaser and the security service company concerned.

The security service product supplier must have the infrastructure and the required expertise to support the relationship continuously.

Security Sector Regulatory Bodies

The security industry has established a number of bodies to regulate itself. Membership in these bodies is voluntary. They include:

Ready to get going? Here’s 10 Steps to Start Your Business For Free (Almost)

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Start-up Industry Specific

How Do I Start A Transport Or Logistics Business?

An all in one guide to starting a transport and logistics business.




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Thinking about starting a transport business?

Forecasts indicate that the demand for freight transport will grow in South Africa by between 200% and 250% over the 15 to 20 years.

Some corridors, (high volume transport routes that connect major centres), such as the corridors between Gauteng and Cape Town (which amount to 50% of all corridor transport) will increase even faster.

The scope in the transport and logistics industry is varied – from a one-man show using a small truck to transport goods and offer services, to a fleet of transport vehicles which travel the length and breadth of South Africa’s roads.

Road transportation includes commuter transport from taxis to bus transportation.

It can be a tough industry and there are many threats facing transport businesses but if you get it right, you can build a successful business.

What is covered in this guide:

  1. How to start your transport and logistics business
  2. How to get funding for your transport business
  3. What are the costs involved
  4. Finding customers and getting transport contracts
  5. Getting onto suppliers lists
  6. Buying trucks and employing drivers
  7. What are the regulations and risks
  8. Where to find guidance to start your business.

Ready to get going? Click the arrow button to learn how to start your own transport business.

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