Does the US Government Buy Bulk Chemicals

Does the US Government Buy Bulk Chemicals

People don’t often think about institutional purchases and contracts with bulk suppliers, but these purchases are made at all levels of the US government.

Information on these items is usually listed in files or databases that can be hard to find via search engines, but details about federal spending are listed on There are also sites that allow you to search government contracts.

While it can be challenging to interpret the raw data alone, the US government has created numerous contracts with chemical companies. In this blog post, we’ll explain what they’re used for.

Why Does the US Government Need Bulk Chemicals?

The US government is divided into three levels: federal, state, and local. There are entities at each level that oversee different functions that require the purchase of bulk chemicals due to the monumental scale of their operations. Common functions include:

  • Waste management
  • Public health
  • Transportation
  • Parks and recreation
  • Defense

Many bulk chemicals purchased on the state and local levels are used for wastewater management. However, bulk purchases often include more miscellaneous items such as chemicals to upkeep lawns in public parks or government facilities.

Many federal agencies engage in contracts with chemical suppliers to fulfill large orders. Bulk chemicals are commonly purchased by the Departments of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, and even Defense.

Chemicals for pest management are one of the most purchased for agriculture. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, public health agency purchases of bulk chemicals increased as demand rose for sanitizers. Other exceptional circumstances necessitate a bulk supply of specialty chemicals to manage and remove dangerous toxins in the environment, such as oil spills.

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