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July/August 2021 | R61.50 (incl. VAT)

Hygiene • Cleaning • Pest Control • Laundry • Facility Management Services

The rise of fogging services Window and façade cleaning Disinfecting wipes a modern clean COVID-19 changed healthcare cleaning


contents JULY/AUGUST 2021 VOL 22 NO. 4 Cover story Prime Cleaning Suppliers is a leading South African cleaning-solutions supplier, established in 1996. Prime Cleaning Suppliers has spent a number of years building strong brands, many of which have been tested by the SABS 1828 and 1853 standards and carry their mark of surety, which gives the customer confidence when using the products. All disinfectants are registered as per Act 29 and are compliant to the VC8054 compulsory specification for disinfectants. Prime Cleaning Suppliers’ complete cleaning solutions cover paper products/dispensers, cleaning chemicals/disinfectants, floorcare machines and cleaning sundries. Prime Cleaning Suppliers has an ongoing commitment to ensure the best longterm solution to their customers and represents the following brands: Aquarius, Kleenex, Scott, Wetrok, Wypall, and Rubbermaid Commercial Products.

Opinion

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Industry News

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Company Profile

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• The rise of fogging services during a pandemic

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• First global hygiene summit launched • SIU freeze assets of Gauteng companies contracted for school fumigation • Cleaners demanding to be insourced protest at Tshwane House • First SA Biotech to achieve EU biocidal registration • Travel accreditations support hotel guest safety and satisfaction • Local company innovates to deal with plastic pollution • Pro cycling team pick natural citrus extract disinfectant for virus protection • Hyvest Group – refocused to meet growing demand

Features

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Window and façade cleaning • Common mistakes in selecting commercial exterior window washing equipment • Clarifying window and façade cleaning methods • Window cleaning in South Africa • Window washing without the strain

@AfricanCleanMag

AfricanCleaningReview

african-cleaning-review Publishing Editor: Johann van Vuuren +27 (0) 11 238 7848 or +27 (0) 72 611 1959 Email: africancleaningreview@cleantex.co.za Advertising: +27 (0) 11 238 7848 or +27 (0) 72 611 1959 Email: africancleaningreview@cleantex.co.za Operations and Accounts: Nandé Jacobs Email: africancleaningreview@cleantex.co.za All editorial contributions can be sent to the editor who reserves the right to publish editorial based on the strength of its content. No articles or photographs may be reproduced, in whole or in part, without written permission from the publishers. Although every effort is made to ensure the accuracy and reliability of material published in African Cleaning Review, e-squared publications and its agents can accept no responsibility for the veracity of the claims made by contributors, manufacturers or advertisers. Copyright of all material published in African Cleaning Review remains with e-squared publications and its agents.

Planned features for 2021 Feature sections in every issue: • Laundry and dry cleaning review • Facilities management review Sept/Oct issue: Editorial deadline 20 August • Sustainable cleaning • Carpet care

Disinfecting wipes 16 • Disinfecting wipes with Oxivir offer a simple, fast and effective alternative • Advantages of using disinfection wipes • Buyer beware – not all disinfectant wipes are created equal

Nov/Dec issue: Editorial deadline 15 October • Hospitality cleaning solutions • Washroom products and cleaning

Healthcare cleaning 20 • COVID-19 pandemic changed healthcare cleaning procedures forever • Interactive Clean Hospital Training helps staff secure safe healthcare environments • Reducing hospital-acquired infections and the spread of COVID-19 • Fighting HAIs with effective hand hygiene procedures

Educational

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FM Review

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Laundry Review

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New Products

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•  POPIA implementation – why organisations should embrace privacy laws • Understanding the changing environment of workplace cleaning

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African Cleaning Review is aimed at end users, contractors and suppliers of products and services to Africa’s Cleaning, Hygiene, Maintenance, Laundry, Pest Control and Facility Management Services industries. It is published every other month by: e-squared publications. Tel: +27 (0) 11 238 7848 or +27 (0) 72 611 1959 PO Box 1976, Halfway House, 1685, South Africa Email: africancleaningreview@cleantex.co.za Website: www.africancleaningreview.co.za

• Modern, digital and mobile order picking solution • Innovations, textile hygiene and reusable products • Environmentally friendly cleaning and sanitising solutions • The air you breathe could be deadly • Introducing Comac Fleet Care

Published by:

Official publication and media partner of:

African Cleaning Review July/August 2021

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from the editor

opinion

The rise of fogging services during a pandemic Despite the development of coronavirus vaccines that have proven efficacious in preventing serious illness, hospitalisation and death,

Cleaning to break the chain of infection The cleaning industry provides a vital service, ensuring that workplaces, hospitals, schools, transport and public spaces are kept clean and pleasant to use. Surveys conducted in the past by the hospitality industry consistently placed cleanliness at the top of customer choice factors. The importance of cleanliness and hygiene has moved even more to the foreground as South Africa is struggling to cope with the third wave of the coronavirus pandemic driven by the rapid spread of the Delta variant. Hospitals are under extreme pressure as the need for beds and oxygen skyrocket at a tremendous pace. With the current public health situation bolstering the necessity for effective appropriate surface disinfection in mind, we take a closer look at methods to break the chain of infection and offer the best possible protection against the spread of the coronavirus. Thorough cleaning and disinfecting has always been a priority in healthcare facilities but has received refreshed prominence in many industries since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and became a driver of innovation. Another feature looks at the highly specialised area of window and façade cleaning and offers insight into the latest equipment, expert industry input relating to cleaning methods and transformation of the sector. Enjoy the read, #StaySafe and #VaccinateToSaveSouthAfrica

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the world is gripped by the economic and healthcare havoc COVID-19 continues to wreak. The third wave currently sweeping through South Africa, compounded by the delays in rolling out vaccinations, means that citizens’ lives are still hugely impacted.

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his means that nonpharmaceutical interventions such as masking, ventilation, social distancing, hand hygiene, surface cleaning and disinfection will be with us well into 2022. It is not an understatement to say that sections of our population are being gripped by panic in the third wave. It is therefore not surprising that so many are looking to fog their facilities to ‘eliminate’ COVID-19 and assure the safety of occupants and visitors. Unfortunately, the ‘cleaning theatre’ of the fogging process merely gives them a false sense of security. The public misconceptions regarding fogging date back to the start of the pandemic in 2020. Early laboratory tests indicated that the coronavirus could survive on surfaces for up to 6 days. The flaw in this research was that 10 million virus particles were placed on the test area. This would require at least one hundred COVID-19 positive people coughing and sneezing on the test area. This is unlikely to happen in real life! Dr Emanuel Goldman1 a microbiologist at New Jersey Medical School, published his landmark research ‘Exaggerated risk of transmission of COVID-19 by fomites’2 in The Lancet on 30 July 2020. Even prior to this publication there was increasing evidence that the dominant route of transmission of the virus is via aerosol droplets dispersed during talking, sneezing or coughing.

At the time, the CDC3 and WHO4 were under increasing pressure to recognise the aerosol transmission route. In an open letter5 dated 6 July 2020, 239 scientists from 32 countries urged the WHO to finally acknowledge the overwhelming scientific evidence supporting aerosol transmission. In fairness, we have video evidence that within both the CDC and WHO the aerosol transmission debate was raging! Ultimately, aerosol transmission gained due recognition. The CDC eventually unequivocally stated that there’s ‘less than a 1 in 10 000 chance of acquiring COVID-19 from a surface’6. This fully vindicated Dr Goldman’s research. The Professional Body for Environmental Hygiene7 (PBEH) has monitored the pandemic since the very beginning. We were advising our industry associations, the National Contract Cleaners Association (NCCA)8 and BEECA9 Cleaning Association on cleaning and disinfecting best practices to reduce the transmission of the coronavirus. We were literally reviewing scores of documents each week, sifting through the inconsistent advice that was sometimes being communicated. A key document we identified was the National Department of Health advisory10 issued on 10 June 2020. The Department deserves enormous credit for the accuracy and relevance of this document. The key message from a cleaning and disinfection perspective was “The Department of Health does


opinion not endorse or require ‘deep cleaning’ that involves fumigation, demisting or fogging. Nor does the Department of Health require a so-called ‘certificate of cleaning’.” The information in the Department’s advisory is backed up by the CDC, EPA11 and World Health Organization.

The Gauteng Department of Education project Despite the scientific evidence available that the coronavirus was unlikely to survive on surfaces longer than 24 hours, the Gauteng Department of Education decided to ‘deep clean and fog’ schools that were due to reopen from the middle of last year onwards. The fact that the schools had been closed for months made this ‘deep cleaning and fogging’ even more nonsensical. Daily Maverick investigative journalist, Mark Heywood12, published an article on 26 January 202113 revealing that the Department had spent an eye watering R431m on deep cleaning and fogging. He also revealed that the Western Cape Department of Education had spent just R2.55m on deep cleaning in that province. Mark immediately suspected grossly inflated charges by the ‘service providers’. Subsequent investigations by the SIU and Kirsten Pearson of Corruption Watch have resulted in the SIU freezing assets in excess of R60m.

This fogging corruption scandal was further exposed by the investigative Carte Blanche television program on the 27 June 2021. This is an ongoing investigation.

The third wave The toll that the coronavirus is taking on the South African society is manifest. So many South Africans are terrified that they risk losing vulnerable loved ones, given the delayed rollout of vaccinations. It is therefore easy for us to fall prey to the unethical and untrue promises so many of the fogging service providers continue to peddle. It is imperative that we remind ourselves of the CDC’s advice that there’s ‘less than a 1 in 10,000 chance’ of acquiring the coronavirus from a surface. The only possible benefit of fogging is surface disinfection. The sometimesexorbitant charges for fogging cannot be justified. The CDC and WHO both emphasise that normal cleaning and disinfection of surfaces is adequate to reduce the risk of surface transmission. The main takeaway from this article is that fogging does nothing to address aerosol transmission of the coronavirus! Arthur Bath is Vice Chairman of the Professional Body for Environmental Hygiene (PBEH). The Professional Body aims to provide recognition of competence to professionals in the cleaning industry.

Arthur Bath References: 1 https://njms-web.njms.rutgers.edu/profile/ myProfile.php?mbmid=egoldman 2 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/ PMC7333993/ 3 https://www.cdc.gov 4 https://www.who.int 5 https://www.the-scientist.com/news-opinion/ scientists-urge-consideration-of-airbornesars-cov-2-transmission-67702/amp 6 https://youtu.be/JcKqhdYTxQw 7 http://www.pbeh.co.za/ 8 https://www.ncca.co.za/ 9 http://www.beeca.co.za 10 https://drive.google.com/file/ d/1b66qqWfMRccusRhTAK6Vd_ABuwJrJzE/view 11 https://www.epa.gov 12 https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/author/ markheywood/ 13 https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/ article/2021-01-26-gauteng-departmentof-education-spent-r431-million-in-threemonths-on-unnecessary-deep-cleaning-anddecontamination-of-schools/amp/

SHARE YOUR OPINION WITH US The African Cleaning Review (ACR) magazine is evolving and we need readership input in order to guide us in the process of best servicing the professional cleaning industry. Your input is valuable to us; all you have to do is to take less than 5 minutes to answer a few questions. The process is very simple, just scan this QR Code with your smartphone, or alternatively, type the URL into your internet browser. Then answer the 10 straightforward questions about the magazine. Thank you, The ACR team.

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industry news First global hygiene summit launched

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he COVID-19 pandemic has brought hygiene, and, more specifically, the role it can play in our health, into sharp focus and further reinforced the fact that prevention is better than cure. However, despite hygiene being the preventive component of the global fight against infectious diseases it has languished as a minor scientific and political interest for decades. Established towards the end of 2020 with the mission of “enabling and accelerating a portfolio of hygiene science to improve public health through better outcomes and behaviours” the Reckitt Global Hygiene Institute (RGHI) will organise the world’s first Global Hygiene Summit in Singapore in May 2022 and raise hygiene, and the role it plays in health, up the agenda. Singapore has been chosen as the venue for the inaugural summit because of its track

record in public health and evidencebased policy and management of healthcare, and a trusted healthcare system. Organised in partnership with Singapore’s National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID) and the World Bank, the Global Hygiene Summit 2022 will create a forum for multi-level and multi-disciplinary discussions around hygiene science, behaviour, economics, and realworld experiences which can shape policy and drive better public health outcomes globally and aims to become the global meeting place for the diverse audiences involved in the science, implementation and policy of hygiene. “One of the biggest issues in the hygiene space is its lack of definition as a field. How can we expect to convince policymakers that they need to be investing in a space where we

struggle to define the impact? The Global Hygiene Summit will create a positive and stimulating environment that aims to persuade the various hygiene stakeholders that working together will, ultimately, create a stronger voice for change,” said Simon Sinclair, Executive Director of RGHI. For more information visit: www.rghi.org/s/summit

SIU freeze assets of Gauteng companies contracted for school fumigation

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he Special Investigating Unit (SIU) was granted a preservation order obtained to freeze assets worth R40.7 million of 14 service providers which the Gauteng Department of Education contracted to decontaminate schools during the first wave of COVID-19 infections. In a June statement the SIU said it would also launch review proceedings in the Special Tribunal within the next 30 days for an order compelling the service providers to pay back the money. The SIU investigation has revealed that the procurement process conducted by the Gauteng education department was manifestly unlawful. The action follows an investigation into allegations of unlawful procurement of services by the education department to decontaminate, disinfect and sanitise schools.

Cleaners demanding to be insourced protest at Tshwane House

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leaners in Pretoria affiliated with the South African Funeral, Catering, Retail and Allied Workers Union (SAFCRAWU) protested during June at Tshwane House to draw the City of Tshwane’s attention to their insourcing plight. According to protest convenor Isaac Malema cleaners responsible for keeping municipal offices such as the Tshwane Call Centre and the City

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council offices in Hammanskraal clean were calling on the City of Tshwane to insource their services. Speaking outside Tshwane House following a brief protest by workers, Malema said they felt hard done by because the City was willing to insource security workers, yet those responsible for keeping their offices clean were being left out in the cold. He said the main reason why

workers were demanding to be insourced was due to the fact that small companies subcontracted by the city were mistreating them and often delayed paying the salaries of workers. “We believe insourcing will provide workers with a liveable wage, fringe benefits and opportunities, increased job security better wages and overall economic growth,” added Malema.


industry news First SA Biotech to achieve EU biocidal registration

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iodx – producing disinfectant products with 99.987% SARSCoV-2 (COVID-19) efficacy – is the first South African biotech to gain stringent EU (European Union) biocidal registration. A biocidal product features an active substance that is intended to destroy, render harmless or otherwise exert a controlling effect on a harmful organism. The active substance in a biocidal product can be a natural or a chemical substance, among others. At the end of a very long, very expensive five years of testing and following a rigorous and strict application process, Biodx has finally achieved EU registration or their b bioactive™ (DECONT-X™) disinfectant technology. Biodx uses natural citrus and the product, which is safe for humans, hands and the environment, has a natural citrus extract stabilised with an organic biodegradable compound,

which contains no chlorine, ethanol or aldehydes. Non-corrosive and earth-friendly, the formulation, called DECONT-X® (branded b bioactive™) rapidly kills 99.999% of many bacteria species. It is proven to be 99.987 percent effective against the SARSCoV-2 virus and has proven to be effective against enveloped viruses. “It’s been a daunting road but one where the end was only possible with the help of a dedicated team, whose assistance made this dream a reality. Dr Mark Kelly, Biodx’s Chief Scientist who has been with me every step of the way, scientist Dr Jan Reynhardt, CEO of GrnCAT Holdings, together with Dr Lucia Steenkamp, principle scientist at the CSIR and her team, who offered irreplaceable guidance throughout the research,” says Burt Rodrigues, proud CEO of Biodx. “Above all, this now gives us access to the European industrial biotech

markets – only registered products may be sold in the EU – which with our product being proven and accredited in the EU against SARS-CoV-2 sees us poised for a successful entry, showing that South Africa can hold its own in this field.” For more information visit: www.biodx.co

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industry news Travel accreditations support hotel guest safety and satisfaction

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he Global Biorisk Advisory Council™ (GBAC), a Division of ISSA, announced during June that it is collaborating with Global Healthcare Accreditation® to support hotels seeking formal accreditation for their cleaning programs, as well as guest safety and satisfaction for medical and wellness travellers. The GBAC STAR™ / GHA WellHotel® Program, which provides assurance and external validation of a property’s risk mitigation protocols and guest experience, includes two remote accreditation options: GBAC STAR / GHA WellHotel® for Medical Travel and GBAC STAR / GHA WellHotel® for Well-being. “Before the pandemic, global wellness and medical travel generated

over $700 billion of revenue annually, making it an important focus for many hospitality properties,” said GHA CEO Karen Timmons. “In the wake of the pandemic, there is a growing consensus that consumers will turn to trusted sources as safety increasingly becomes a brand differentiator. GBAC STAR / GHA WellHotel® Accreditation ensures hotels comply with recognised industrywide hotel cleaning and sanitation standards required during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as customer experience and safety protocols specific to the needs and expectations of medical travel and wellness guests. GHA is proud to partner with GBAC to align the WellHotel® programs

with GBAC STAR and build trust and confidence on the part of guests traveling for medical care and wellbeing.” GBAC STAR / GHA WellHotel® for Medical Travel helps hospitality properties of all types, such as luxury, boutique, extended-stay, and airport hotels, put the appropriate safety protocols in place to care for medical travel guests. Meanwhile, GBAC STAR / GHA WellHotel® for Well-being is a framework that enables hotels to meet the needs of wellness-minded tourists. Properties can also achieve both accreditations at once through a combined application process. For more information, visit: wellhotel.org/gbac

Local company innovates to deal with plastic pollution

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ape Town based Ocean Plastics Technologies (OPT) is promoting innovative processes in the plastic recycling industry. The South African company has developed a new way to recycle plastic waste with their Micro Recycling Plants (MRPs), mobile containers that process reclaimed plastic waste more sustainably than big material recovery facilities such as the large recycling plants. OPT Managing Director Oliver Nudds, said this process aimed to clean communities and deal with waste plastic before it goes into the water systems, while creating sustainable opportunities

for small businesses and entrepreneurs. “We wanted to intercept plastic waste at the source in order to stop it from entering the waterways and the ocean, by collecting plastic in our MRPs which are placed as close to the source of waste as possible, whether it’s a beach, a river, a landfill or a harbour,” said Nudds. Nudds said the localisation made it easier for the public to recycle their plastic waste as they didn’t have to travel long distances to access recycling facilities. Additionally, the MRPs were independently operated by entrepreneurs thus providing sustainable

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opportunities for small business owners to benefit financially from the success of the container. “The plastic collected by the reclaimers is sorted, cleaned and shredded at the MRP and then sold back into the existing supply chain, where it is recycled by manufacturing facilities into new products,” said Nudds. “Our aim is to enhance sustainability and economic development. The containers have a huge impact on the communities and allow entrepreneurs to pursue their skills and vision for a cleaner and sustainable future,” said MRP Operator Njabula Dlamini.


industry news Pro cycling team pick natural citrus extract disinfectant for virus protection

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n an effort to ensure leading South African registered international cycling Team Qhubeka NextHash remains protected during the Tour de France and beyond, Biodx a South African biotech has signed a partnership agreement to supply the team with disinfectants for hands, surfaces and spaces based on Biodx’s active ingredient b bioactive™. As one of the world’s top 20 ranked pro cycling teams the demand to meet their fans, the media and guests on the Tour de France means a lot of personal interaction. With proven 99.987 percent efficacy against SARS-CoV-2, b bioactive™ is a South African biotechnology developed and now being taken up by the market to guarantee performance against current viral and bacterial challenges. Doug Ryder, Team Principal of Qhubeka NextHash said, “To remain healthy through the travel and

logistics of a cycling team that moves almost every day from bikes in the outdoors to trains, planes, busses, in and out of hotels, press interviews, media briefings, partner events and engagements is a continuous stress. Partnering with Biodx as our official disinfectant provider helps us create a sterile environment as much as possible.” After the intense preparation and build-up world tour pro cyclists endure to compete at this level they need the assurance that any disinfectant they use is safe. What’s really important is that these disinfectants can’t have adverse effects on their respiratory tract or on skin contact. Biodx have spent the last 16 years developing b bioactive™ from a natural citrus extract (lemon) that is one of the very few disinfecting active ingredients that contain no harmful chemicals.

According to Burt Rodrigues, CEO of Biodx, “It’s a privilege to have an active ingredient – b bioactive™ capable of protecting athletes at the highest level of the sporting code with certainty.” For more information visit: www.biodx.co/bbioactive/

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company profile Hyvest Group

Hygiene group refocused to meet growing demand

Kevin Clarke

During a time when the multiple facets of hygiene has become tremendously prominent in the fight against a deadly pandemic, it is appropriate to take a closer look at a leading company that plays a frontline role in the supply of cleaning and hygiene products to the African market. In this company profile Hyvest Group CEO Kevin Clarke offers a current overview of the Hyvest Group that present diverse and tailored solutions to add value for customers.

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he Hyvest Group of companies is best described as a support supply business to the African hygiene, cleaning, hospitality, healthcare and industrial markets. The group offers diverse manufacturing capabilities in hygiene dispensing systems, liquid and powder chemical blending, a variety of aerosol offerings along with an away-from-home paper converting business and distributes its comprehensive basket of products across the African continent. The history of the group stems from 2005 with the greenfield start-up of its first business Hygiene Systems (HS) that focused on the wholesale supply of washroom dispensing systems and their allied soap, sanitiser and aerosol consumables in support of the washroom service providing industry. Over the last 16 years, Hygiene Systems has introduced many of the programmable dispenser technologies that have shaped the African hygiene industry. Today HS offers customers a choice of several different matching dispensing ranges and consumables that it has developed and manufactured to suit the African hygiene market conditions, as well as bespoke and exclusive product ranges that are designed and manufactured to specific customer requirements. By 2014, consumable sales volumes had created the need to vertically

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integrate the supply chain in soap, sanitiser and hand soaps, which led to the acquisition of SMP - Specialised Maintenance Products, a Gautengbased chemical and aerosol blending company with a long history in chemical and aerosol production capabilities. SMP had two operating divisions, one which focused on providing product development and private label chemical and aerosol products to wholesalers and resellers and a second division that focused on the industrial channel in the mining, transport and engineering sectors with its own tried and tested range of specialised lubricants, additives and cleaning chemicals. The next step in the evolution of the group was to integrate the away-fromhome paper supply chain and, after two unsuccessful years of searching for a suitable acquisition in the paper converting space, it was decided to start a paper converting business and in 2015 The Paper Connection (TPC) was born. Today TPC has the capability of converting a complete range of 1- and 2-ply toilet tissue and hand towel roll and folded products that can be private labelled and are widely distributed to numerous away-from-home markets. The ability to convert a complete basket of away-from-home paper products and hand hygiene formulations, attracted the interest of several larger healthcare groups who

were actively looking for alternative supply solutions, and a decision was taken to start a business that focused on hand hygiene solutions to the healthcare industry and the company Hymed was formed to grow the group’s paper volumes into the healthcare sector. A strategic decision to refocus the group’s business to business aspirations on three specific industry sectors where future African growth opportunities are perceived to be, namely mining, healthcare and hospitality led to the acquisition of Fresh iD, a KZN-based hospitality hygiene business focused predominantly on the provision of professional hygiene chemicals and dosing systems and cleaning solutions to the hospitality and food services sectors. Fresh iD which has been rebranded as Fresh, has entered into an exclusive partnership with both Christeyns, a world leader in low-impact laundry chemistry, and Otek, a world leader in Ozone laundry technology providing state-of-the-art, low environmental impact and cost-saving solutions to the textile laundering industry. The Christeyns laundry chemical range will be manufactured locally under license by SMP. With this three-way partnership, Fresh is poised to become an industry leader in this sector.


company profile Hyvest Group The group offers diverse manufacturing capabilities in hygiene dispensing systems, liquid and powder chemical blending, a variety of aerosol offerings along with an away from home paper converting business and distributes its comprehensive basket of products across the African continent. In 2020, The Hyvest Group restructured its business into three divisions, comprising of six separate brands that are focused on their specific core competencies. The Manufacturing Division houses the brands of Specialised Maintenance Products and The Paper Connection that not only manufacture the downstream sales division’s chemical, aerosol and paper requirements, but also manage certain direct supply relationships with larger reseller customers that require bespoke product development and private label branding. The Distributor & Reseller Division of Hygiene Systems focuses on supplying a complete basket of dispensing systems, consumable and paper products to distributors and reseller customers both within the borders of South Africa as well as to export customers in 18 African countries. A focus on the development of partnerships within the retail sector has produced encouraging results for the betasan hand and surface sanitiser range. The Business-to-Business division is comprised of Hymed, focused on the Healthcare industry; Fresh focused on the hospitality food services and industrial laundry sector; and SMP Industrial Supplies focused on the mining, transport and engineering sectors. All three businesses offer a comprehensive range of products manufactured by SMP & TPC alongside bespoke ranges of outsourced janitorial and PPE products. The group’s extensive national manufacturing, warehouse and distribution footprint comprising seven separate locations with more than 15 000 m2 under roof, ensures that the needs of the group’s customers are met by staying at the forefront of new technologies pertaining to formulations, industryrelated technologies, manufacturing methods and group logistical solutions. The 30 years of industry experience enables The Hyvest Group to tailor solutions and add value for their customers at every stage of their supply chain. Various discussions with existing customers have indicated that there has been nothing but approval for the strategy and market approach, and with more strategic acquisitions planned for the future, Hyvest customers can look forward to an even more comprehensive product basket to create a truly onestop cleaning and hygiene supply shop. For more information about The Hyvest Group visit: www.hyvest.co.za

Paper converting at The Paper Connection

ISO accredited chemicals. lubricants and aerosols – SMP

Washroom hygiene dispensers – Hygiene Systems

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feature window and façade cleaning

Common mistakes in selecting commercial exterior window washing equipment Even though commercial window cleaning can be a profitable business given that you can develop recurring, regular work, some building service contractors (BSCs) still opt to outsource the job to professional window cleaning companies. It’s an understandable decision if you consider the liability and safety concerns, along with the perceived complexity of the job. However, with the latest technology in exterior window washing equipment, anyone can profitably clean exterior glass up to 20 metres without the past safety and liability risks, according to Unger a global window cleaning equipment manufacturer.

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he key to success starts with the commercial window washing equipment you use, as it can be a big player in mitigating risks, producing results and satisfying customers. Out in the field each day working with cleaning professionals, Unger heard first-hand what works and what doesn’t when it comes to exterior window cleaning tools and have developed the following tips on which mistakes to avoid when sourcing your own equipment.

How to select the best exterior window cleaning kit While the COVID-19 pandemic has certainly changed the cleaning industry landscape in more ways than one, the rising popularity of all glass buildings and the requirement of more natural light to meet green building standards continues to drive a spike in demand for professional window cleaning, both inside and out. When it comes to exterior window cleaning, avoiding the following mistakes in the tools you use will help achieve client satisfaction and protect you from the risks associated with traditional window cleaning methods.

Mistake #1: Using tools and methods that use tap water Traditional window cleaning in its simplest form includes a bucket of water, a ladder and squeegee. The problem with this method is that the tap water used as the basis for cleaning is ineffective when it comes to performing professional window cleaning jobs.

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Tap water inherently contains impurities, most of which are common and introduced to provide safe drinking water. While safe to drink, you don’t necessarily want to clean with tap water given these impurities. Unless you’re able to remove 100 percent of the water during the window cleaning process, once the water evaporates, what’s left behind are the impurities – the culprits behind undesirable spots and streaks. Compare tap water to pure water which essentially contains no damaging minerals or sediments (typically defined as less than 10 TDS). When used in window cleaning, pure water, even if 100 percent of it is not removed from the windows, has minimal chance of leaving any residue behind. Not only does it leave behind no residue, but windows also stay cleaner for longer and the chance of spots and stains causing permanent damage to the glass over time is significantly minimised. The latest technology in pure water cleaning systems, cleaning kits and water-fed poles is engineered to be portable, easy to operate and extremely efficient, leaving a streak and spot-free result when used properly.

Mistake #2: Assuming you need to use ladders or lifts for exterior window cleaning According to the U.S. Department of Labour’s National Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, falls, slips, and trips increased 11 percent in 2019. Fortunately, for the window cleaning

industry, new technology continues to make the task of high-access cleaning safer and faster by keeping professionals firmly planted on the ground, yet we still see ladders and lifts used unnecessarily. The use of telescopic poles has been popular for decades; however, in general, their effectiveness becomes limited above seven metres given the specialised skills needed to use a pole with a squeegee and washer above this height. Thankfully, today’s telescoping poles have evolved to meet the requirements of this specialised task. The most advanced pole systems are modular and made of composite materials, such as carbon fibre. Identical pole sections are connected to each other with specialised adapters that allow the pole to remain rigid for up to 20 metres while still being light enough for one person to operate. Not only can the task be executed efficiently, but window cleaners can remain safely on the ground while still achieving the same, if not better results.

Mistake #3: Not upgrading your poles With water-fed poles the traditional way to clean windows with a washer and squeegee is replaced by brushing the window with purified water. The brush removes the dirt from the glass and the water dries completely clean due to the use of purified water. Combine this process with a telescopic pole and windows can be easily cleaned up to 15 metres – quicker, safer and greener than with traditional alternatives.


feature window and façade cleaning Mistake #4: Not prioritising sustainability

Investing in water-fed poles to reach these heights reduces labour hours, insurance costs and the need to use other equipment. Water-fed poles are typically available in aluminium and carbon fibre and can keep exterior windows, building façades, solar panels, signs, etc. cleaner, while keeping window cleaners safer.

According to the Worldwide Cleaning Industry Association, “green cleaning is arguably the number one trend in the cleaning industry and is showing no signs of slowing down.” They describe green cleaning as a marketplace phenomenon driven by customer demand and the overall trending of the broad marketplace for environmentally preferable products and services. What this means to professional window cleaners is that the old way of cleaning outdoor windows just won’t cut it if you want to remain competitive. The good news is that the demand for greater social responsibility, ecofriendly products and a commitment to sustainability, is that being sustainable often lowers long-term costs and can increase profits – you may have thought the opposite, right? By trading in older methods for more eco-friendly pure water cleaning, you can attract dirt and grime with deionised water, eliminating the need for detergents or chemicals that can be potentially harmful to the environment and workers. Using a water-fed pole and brush system, pure

water acts as a natural detergent and the runoff from the cleaning process doesn’t harm the plants or grass growing at the base of the building.

High quality equipment is key to delivering professional results The result of selecting high quality commercial window washing equipment is beautiful, clean windows and customer satisfaction – the ingredients for a profitable business and a healthy, clean facility. Whether your goals are starting a professional window cleaning business, bringing exterior window washing services in-house or optimising your current cleaning practices, we recommend you start by evaluating the commercial cleaning tools you use and by keeping the above considerations top of mind. Unger was founded in Germany in 1964 by Henry Unger, a professional window cleaner who started designing cleaning products for professional use. Over the years, Unger has become a market leader in the professional cleaning industry. For more information about the company visit: www.ungerglobal.com

advertorial Ultra High-Level Cleaning

Specialist high access cleaning For the past 29 years, Ultra High-Level Cleaning (Ultra) has specialised on the detailed aspects of window and high-level cleaning. The company operates in Gauteng and boasts a reputation for excellent service, competitive pricing and a high standard of safety. Ultra is the only high-level cleaning company that utilises all access methods available, namely rope access, ladders, water-fed poles, aluminium towers and MEWPs. In addition, the company is able to offer restoration of water-damaged glass and aluminium. Safety is not negotiable at Ultra and its safety record is exemplary and unmatched by competitors. Ultra is one of the founding members of the Institute for Work at Height (IWH). MD Rob Urquhart is also a Director of the IWH and Chairman of the Aluminium Towers and Ladders Chamber. He has served on the SABS TC 214 for over 23 years and previously served as Gauteng branch Chairman of the National Contract Cleaners Association (NCCA). Additionally, Rob is also a TechSaiosh (OHS Practitioner on the NQF) that enables him to assist with health and safety files, incident investigations, audits and other health and safety services. Both Ultra Directors (Rob and Sylvester) are qualified Fall Protection Planners and have various other competencies for working at height. Rob has conducted seminars on working at height safely at Expos, namely AOSH and Cleantex Africa. Ultra staff are trained and certified as competent by IWH-approved training providers. Ultra is well experienced to tackle any high-level cleaning, windows, walls, signage, solar panels, gutters, steel structures, domes and canopies.

Clients include contract cleaning companies, mining houses, schools, universities, property developers, facility managers, residential complexes, shopping malls, factories, warehouses and private homes. All COVID-19 protocols are observed, and fogging services are also offered. For more information or a quote, contact Ultra on 078 801 5130 or email: ultra.hl@worldonline.co.za

The only high level cleaning company using all access methods available: Rope access | Ladders | Water-fed poles Aluminium towers | MEWPs. We also offer restoration of water damaged glass and aluminium. Ultra High-Level Cleaning Specialists Email: ultra.hl@worldonline.co.za Contact number: 078 801 5130

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editorial Apex Access

Clarifying window and façade cleaning methods By: Shawn Northey

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hen it comes to high-level window and façade cleaning, the industry has seen some tremendous developments in the last couple of years. The design of modern buildings has seen more extensive use of glass in commercial buildings, mainly due to its special features and advantages. Glass could make any building look more stunning and modern, but these buildings need to be cleaned often to keep them looking exquisite. Also, as more and more high-rise residential and commercial buildings are constructed using glass, the need to develop safer and more effective technologies for cleaning exterior windows at heights has been evident. The professional window cleaning industry has taken big steps forward in window cleaning technologies over the last decade. Most of these have been focussed around pole, rope and cradle systems, but more recently windowcleaning drones were also being introduced. Let’s look at the different methods for cleaning windows and façades at height:

Water-fed poles Telescopic poles have been improved over the years with the invention of the water- fed pole. This combines brush, water, and pole all in one, which has significantly improved the ease and efficiency of cleaning windows at height. These have been further enhanced with the introduction of hightech carbon fibre, and the utilisation of purified water to clean the glass.

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Using purified water ensures that windows will dry completely clean. Tap water contains various minerals and salts and, if it is left to dry on glass, it leaves water spots and residue behind. Purified water also reduces the reliance on chemicals to produce streakfree results, an added bonus for the environment!

When a cradle system is not suitable or not available, mounted platforms can be another option. This is when adjustable hydraulic platforms, often mounted to a truck or other large vehicle, are used to access the higher windows. They are easily controlled and manoeuvred and come with safety rigs and guardrails, just like a suspended cradle.

Rope access

Window cleaning drones

Rope access is a form of work positioning, initially developed from techniques used in climbing and caving and then later adapted for work in industrial and commercial setups. A two-rope system is used where one rope acts as a working line, and the other rope serves as a back-up in case of the unlikely failure of the main line. Although it appears unsafe, the use of this system in fact ensures that the window cleaning technician is very safe and proper use of the health and safety regulations ensures that the industry maintains a very high safety record. Using rope access to get to higher windows gives cleaners direct access to the glass, as opposed to using water-fed poles from further away. They can get up close to provide a thorough and professional clean. They can also manoeuvre around easier and get those hard-to-reach places that poles might miss.

Water-spraying drones are the coolest technology to hit the commercial window cleaning industry. The drones are water-fed from an exceptionally long hose that remains connected to the ground. The drone can then fly up to the façade of tall buildings to wash and squeegee windows at any height. Not only are these window cleaning drones faster than their human counterparts, but they also do an amazing job in taking away a lot of the health and safety concerns of people working at these extreme heights. The window washing crew can stay safely on the ground and manage the hose and drone controls, while the drone goes up and takes care of everything else. This significantly reduces the risk of injury or fatalities. These new window cleaning technologies have meant that in delivering impeccably clean windows safety concerns are reduced, and efficiency and profitability are increased.

Cradles and platforms In some buildings, the only way to reach the windows will be to suspend a cradle over the side of the building. Modern buildings will sometimes be fitted with integrated cradle systems to make this easier and safer.

Northey is CEO of Apex Access a leading provider in specialist access services throughout South Africa. For more information visit: www.apexaccess.co.za


editorial Ultra High-Level Cleaning

Window cleaning in South Africa By: Rob Urquhart

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he window cleaning industry has changed over the years, transforming from a cleaner with a ladder and a handful of rags and a bucket, to a well-trained and professional industry. The effect of the COVID-19 lockdown, concerns about spreading the coronavirus and stopping of nonessential work has hit the window/ high-level cleaning industry hard. With people working from home, and many business premises standing empty, the window/high-level cleaning industry has seen substantial retrenchments. This, and the inefficiencies and delays of the TERS UIF payouts has had a serious and negative effect on window cleaners. Sadly, this has led to an increase in the number of businesses which do not adhere to health and safety regulations, minimum wages nor employee benefits. As a realistic comparison, in a pre-COVID-19 scenario, a country like Belgium with a population of 11.5 million had over 1500 window cleaning firms, in contrast South Africa with a population of 59.6 million had less than 100. Apart from the aesthetics of a facility, long term dirt build-up can damage glass and increase heat reflection into a building, driving up air conditioning (electricity and water usage) costs. The method of window/high-level cleaning selected will depend on the height and design of the building. If the area to be cleaned is accessed using work-at-height equipment, whether ladders, rope access, scaffolding, MEWPs or suspended access

equipment, then there is quite a range of squeegees, mops, scrapers, buckets, extension poles and chemicals (good quality neutral detergent) available. Provided the cleaners received recognised training in the relevant work-at-height methods and all health and safety regulations are adhered to, this method of performing high-level cleaning is quite safe. In Europe and the US, water-fed pole systems are widely used. Purified water (with a TDS of 10ppm or less) is pumped up a pole which has a brush at the top for cleaning a window. Pure water dries naturally, leaving no residue or marks on the cleaned surface. The first water-fed pole system was used in South Africa in 2007. The use of these systems has not become as widespread in this country in comparison to other parts of the world. Concerns over water usage (pole systems use at least 5 times more water than traditional methods), limited height (the longest used locally is 21m) and the cost of imported purification systems have limited the popularity of these systems amongst clients. The purification system usually involves reverse osmosis (RO), deionisation and microfiltration. During the purification process some systems lose up to 70 percent of the water introduced. Such a complex and wasteful purification system is based on the total dissolvable solids (TDS) of tap water abroad, which varies. For instance, a city like London has a TDS of 400ppm, while Johannesburg has a TDS of 156, so local tap water needs

less purification. It is important to note that locally available purification systems consisting of microfilters and a resin polish work perfectly well. Apart from the above, other pros and cons of the squeegee system versus water poles include hard dirt, such as dried paint which can only be removed by scraping. However, purified water leaves no residue on the surface and reduces static build-up on glass, which can affect the efficiency of solar panels, for instance. Which is best, old versus ‘new’? Ultimately, it is up to the client to make this decision, based on risk and cost.

Rob Urquhart is a director of Ultra High Level Cleaning and former National Contract Cleaners Association (NCCA) Gauteng branch Chairman. Urquhart can be reached at: ultra.hl@worldonline.co.za

Advertise in the primary African trade magazine for the commercial cleaning and hygiene sectors. Reach your target market cost-effectively with a direct link to end-users, building service contractors, facility management and key institutional segments.

For more information regarding advertising / editorial / digital packages, email: nande@cleantex.co.za

www.africancleaningreview.co.za

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editorial GCE

Window washing without the strain Ever considered how much effort goes in to cleaning windows? Not just at home but what about that tall office building you drive by every day, or the shopping mall you frequently visit? How many windows require cleaning on a daily basis and who performs this task? Window cleaning technicians are responsible for rendering dirty glass windows of homes, offices, stores, and high-rise buildings clean and into glistening reflections. Because they often work in difficult, physically demanding conditions – outdoors and high up on ladders, scaffolding, or suspended platforms – window cleaners have a more dangerous job than most people, but what if there was a way to minimise a variety of hazardous factors as well as assist with the well-being of the individual? Introducing the revolutionary i-suit from i-team global, an eye-catching, innovative product that changed traditional means of window washing. The i-suit feels like a mobile backpack, with a steel tube attached and bent towards a pulley system. This piece of equipment can relieve the user of at least 50 percent of physical strain during cleaning. No more shoulder injuries, back pain, muscle fatigue or injuries while washing windows day-in and day-out. It can also increase the productivity of the user by allowing window cleaners to work ergonomically and responsibly. The system consists of a backpack and lance, and comes with a unique set of i-glasses. With the backpack, all the weight of the high-reach window cleaning pole is centred and lifted from the middle, allowing the user free movement; minimised strain as well as providing better visibility of the area being cleaned. The i-suit glasses are unique as it borrows elements of belay glasses, the number one product for safety and security used by many rock climbers across the globe. The unique design gives the wearer great overall vision of their work area without putting strain on the neck as a result of looking up for extended periods of time. The i-suit is fast and easy to use. When working with a telescopic pole or water-fed pole in combination with the i-suit, it allows the operator to work up to three times faster. There is no need to carry and constantly move ladders to areas requiring attention. It also increases the safety factor for the user as feet remain firmly on the ground throughout the entire cleaning process. The i-suit is not just limited to use with pure water window cleaning systems. Simply attach a pressure washer, high-reach accessory to the i-suit’s lance, and the operator can now easily clean vertical surfaces like stained walls and windows. Cleaning of commercial walls, windows and façades has suddenly become a lot easier than it used to be.

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The i-team product range is available from Goscor Cleaning Equipment, visit:

African Cleaning Review July/August 2021

www.goscorcleaning.co.za


editorial Numatic International

Floor cleaning critical in infection control The spread of COVID-19 around the world has highlighted the importance of cleaning on both a personal and professional level. We are all washing and sanitising our hands more often, and professional contract cleaners and facility managers are under enormous pressure to keep spaces healthier than ever before. Floor cleaning has always been a critical part of infection control. While floors are not touched as frequently as surfaces including light switches or door handles, contaminants can easily transfer from floors to these objects. Contaminants are kicked into the air effortlessly by shoes, germs cling to equipment and carts traveling throughout facilities, and any item picked up from floors can carry bacteria or viruses. So what’s one of the best ways to clean hard surface floors? No matter your facility, the answer is a Numatic rotary single disc floor scrubber. When using a floor scrubber, the only

thing you are putting on your floors is chemicals and clean water. Floor scrubbers remove dirt and debris, meeting the highest standards for cleanliness. This is especially important when cleaning crews now have more tasks than ever before as they battle the pandemic. Any time saved when cleaning floors can be spent disinfecting other areas and performing more important tasks. To get the best performance from your floor scrubber use a chemical-portioning system. Using too little chemicals will make cleaning ineffective. On the contrary, using copious amounts of chemicals increases the risk of leaving residue behind on your floors. Keep equipment dry and clean, dirty equipment cannot clean floors. After use, thoroughly wash and dry all parts of the equipment, including the pads and brushes. Allow to dry completely before using again. For more information visit: www.numatic.co.za

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feature disinfecting wipes

Disinfecting wipes with Oxivir offer a simple, fast and effective alternative Surface disinfection is always important and it has been at the forefront of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The advice from public health, scientific and governmental authorities has been to clean surfaces and hands frequently to break the chain of infection. In most settings, the aim is to clean more often and more visibly to reassure customers, guests and staff while also providing the best possible protection against the virus. This article by Diversey’s Dr. Claire Khosravi explains how the ready-to-use prewetted Wipe is an effective way to meet this challenge.

Disinfection properties and convenience

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Choosing the correct disinfectant is an important decision as there are a lot of different products on the market which beg several considerations before deciding which one to use. It is always essential to ensure any product will be effective against the pathogens of concern. At the moment the one at the top of most people’s list is the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19. SARS-CoV-2 is an enveloped virus, a class of viruses which are generally easy to kill. Disinfectants with virucidal claims such as EN 14476 (either fully virucidal or limited virucidal or enveloped virus claim) will be effective against enveloped viruses. Prewetted cleaner and disinfectant wipes combine the convenience of a wipe with enhanced disinfection properties meeting the EN 14476 virucidal standard. They offer a more convenient, simpler, faster, and safer alternative to conventional products to clean and disinfect hard surfaces.

Hydrogen Peroxide. The disinfectant properties of hydrogen peroxide have been known for many years. It is an oxidising agent that binds to the walls of an organism and causes damage that quickly kills it. AHP builds on this capability by combining low levels of hydrogen peroxide with a patented blend of commonly used, safe ingredients. This dramatically increases the disinfection potency and cleaning performance of the combined formulation. Products containing AHP have been tested and shown to kill many viruses – including enveloped viruses – in 30 seconds. In fact, disinfectants containing AHP offer what is known as broad-spectrum protection: they are highly effective against a wide range of viruses, spores, yeasts, and fungi, including C. diff, MRSA, Norovirus, E. coli, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. This efficacy has been tested to the latest EN standards – including EN 14476 – and submitted into the Biocidal Products Regulations (BPR). All actives and disinfectants need to meet these standards.

Protecting against multiple pathogens including SARS-CoV-2

Effectiveness against Coronavirus: shorter contact times

The active ingredient in Diversey’s Oxivir Wipes is called AHP or Accelerated

All disinfectants are tested for their ability to reduce the number of pathogens of

African Cleaning Review July/August 2021

concern by a specified amount, as described by each particular standard. The time this takes is known as the contact time and it varies from disinfectant to disinfectant. Contact time must be realistically short so that pathogens are killed before the surface dries. Many products on the market are effective against enveloped viruses, but only AHP offers full virucidal performance in realistic and practical contact times. It is the only commonly available technology where the drying time is longer than the contact time.

Simple and safe to use at any time AHP’s ability to kill pathogens quickly makes it ideal for frequent cleaning. When using an AHP prewetted wipe, the product is always present at the correct concentration for effective disinfection. That means the correct amount of disinfectant is wiped onto the surface for fast and effective performance every time. Diversey AHP prewetted wipes are non-corrosive and non-irritating to the skin. They can be used without wearing PPE and carry no safety classification. Nor do they contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), alkylphenol ethoxylates (APEs), or nonylphenol


feature disinfecting wipes Prewetted cleaner and disinfectant wipes combine the convenience of a wipe with enhanced disinfection properties... They offer a more convenient, simpler, faster, and safer alternative to conventional products to clean and disinfect hard surfaces. ethoxylates (NPEs). This means they are safer to use in public spaces than products using alternative active ingredients or concentrated formulations. For this reason they are ideal when highly visible frequent cleaning will provide additional reassurance to customers, guests, and staff.

Sustainable choice Using a ready-to-use wipe saves time because there is no need to worry about preparing solutions or using special equipment. Nor is any special training required. All of this can make a wipe a sustainable option for many applications. The active AHP ingredient breaks down to water and oxygen shortly after use which means no chemicals are left on the surface or released into the atmosphere. This helps make AHP wipes a highly sustainable alternative to other types of cleaning chemicals or disinfectants. Abridged article by Dr. Claire Khosravi, EU, IP & PC Application and Technical Team Lead at Diversey Europe.

Advantages of using disinfection wipes

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or years, spray bottles and cleaning cloths (microfibre and paper) have been the most popular disinfectant solution used by cleaning companies to render surfaces safe at relatively low cost. Although this system has advantages, many inherent limitations are noted, according to Dreumex, an international manufacturer of cleaning and hygiene solutions. With over 70 years’ experience Dreumex offers an overview of the benefits in using chemical-impregnated wipes. Since 2000, Dreumex has seen organic growth in the disinfection wipes market. The US is the largest buyer, with a significant increase in demand in countries such as Germany, France, England, and the Benelux.

Success factors 1.  Increased effectiveness of the active ingredients. The US Institute for Antimicrobial Resistance and Infection Control concluded that

wipes show the highest ATP reduction on surfaces. Because the wipes are already impregnated with the correct ratio of active ingredients, fewer substances are lost and the disinfectant works more effectively. 2.  Safety. Disinfectant wipes always have the correct ratio that has been researched and tested by experts. 3.  Ease. Disinfectant wipes and chemicals come in one convenient package. Grab a wipe, use it and then straight into the trash. No additional actions are required. 4.  Presentation. Disinfection wipes are often used with a dispenser that is easy to operate. In addition to providing a professional look, it also reduces the spread of bacteria. When using a disinfectant wipe that is located in a dispenser, you reduce the contact moments. This minimises the spread of bacteria and viruses.

Risk factor Environment. When disinfection wipes are deposited in a toilet, this can have negative consequences for the environment. Dispose of disinfection wipes in a waste container.

Conclusion Disinfection wipes are a modern disinfection solution. It demonstrates the same power as the spray, but without the additional limitations. We recommend that cleaning companies standardise this system. Not only is it more efficient but it also reduces risk for employees and customers. For more information visit: www.dreumex.com

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feature disinfecting wipes

Buyer beware – not all disinfectant wipes are created equal

The demand for pre-saturated, disinfecting wipes has grown exponentially during the COVID-19 pandemic, with many new – and often untested – brands appearing in the market, the majority of which have little or no research behind their development in terms of the compatibility of the wipe substrate and fluid content.

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ccording to Annette Devenish, marketing director at Infection Protection Products (IPP) the challenge with this is that a combination of two substrates can completely change the efficacy of a fluid which is why it is so important that a disinfecting product’s entire formula is tested, rather than only the active ingredient. Through its now well-known sanitouch brand, IPP was the first company

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in South Africa to introduce trolley wipes to the local market in 2006. Its wipes are manufactured with a tried and tested detergent disinfectant solution which deactivates and kills any micro-organisms, including the coronavirus. The detergent solution includes a potent soap content which, according to the World Health Organization and scientists around the world, dissolves the fat membrane of the coronavirus which renders it inactive.

Scientist Bernard Reeksting maintains that a disinfecting wipe such as sani-touch’s trolley wipes are more effective than sanitiser spray to protect against the transmission of the coronavirus. Even if the sanitiser includes an acceptable alcohol content, a spray will only act as a wash-down given its wide and rather erratic distribution. The sani-touch wipes physically


feature disinfecting wipes remove bacteria and micro-organisms. The detergent solution loosens dirt while the wipe physically removes and traps the dirt, grit and grime within the wipe substrate, leaving behind a thin layer of disinfecting fluid which sanitises the surface. This is significantly more effective than a reusable cloth which results in bacteria re-contaminating and even crosscontaminating surfaces. A disposable pre-saturated wipe eliminates the potential for cross-contamination. A number of studies conducted in the past year have proved the efficacy of disinfectant wipes as the most effective solution to disinfecting public surfaces, including trolley handles. According to Professor Charles Gerba, Professor of Virology at the Department of Environmental Science at the University of West Arizona, “… wet wipes win hands down in the fight against the coronavirus”. Gerba is internationally recognised for his methodologies for pathogen detection. Trolley wipes and medical

disinfectant wipes by sani-touch include formulations that have been scientifically developed, tweaked and perfected over many years. The company’s SABS marked products have been audited and verified for more than a decade while compatibility between wipe substrates and fluids have been tried and tested. In response to increased demand amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, IPP invested in new state-of-theart machinery and increased its manufacturing capacity. It has also made many of its sani-touch products available in smaller pack sizes for consumers to use at home rather than only the bulk industrial products traditionally supplied to healthcare facilities, retailers and the hospitality sector. Even prior to the pandemic, sanitouch sanitisers included 80 percent ethanol and were the only sanitisers in South Africa with the SABS 490 and SABS 1853 marks. In 2020 the sani-touch range, including trolley

wipes, hand and surface sanitiser range, medical products and alcoholfree products passed the coronavirus EU 14476 tests, a battery of European Standard tests proving their efficacy against this virus. Not all manufacturers of disinfectant wipes and sanitisers have been as diligent about ensuring – and testing – the efficacy of their products, which means consumers have unwittingly been left vulnerable to substandard products which provide no protection against the coronavirus. New entrants to the market are frequently guilty of providing incorrect labelling information and making inaccurate claims on their products which regulatory bodies are too stretched to adequately police. “Given what is at stake, especially during the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s more imperative than ever to look for trusted disinfectant wipes and sanitiser brands from reputable manufacturers,” says Devenish.

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feature healthcare cleaning

COVID-19 pandemic changed healthcare cleaning procedures forever Talented doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals rely on clean and hygienic facilities. That’s why good cleaning procedures and hygiene protocols have always been a key priority in health care facilities. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has shown that current methods of cleaning, hygiene and PPE use were insufficient for coping with new threats. Hospital Healthcare takes a closer look at how cleaning procedures changed and offers insight into what they will look like in the ‘new normal’ of the post-COVID-19 world.

Increased hygiene protocols here to stay COVID-19 is something we will all have to live with for the foreseeable future, and the cleaning and hygiene measures developed during the pandemic will become the new standard, rather than the exception. Healthcare facilities must partner with experienced cleaning professionals that can carry out these increased measures without disrupting patients, visitors or staff. That means carefully scheduling cleans, so they take place either side of high-use periods, and having plans in place to ensure high touchpoints are disinfected as often as required. Cleaning service teams will also need to be flexible. Healthcare facilities have continually changing needs, and cleaners need to be able to adapt to new situations and possible threats. Simply increasing the frequency of cleaning and hygiene will add to cleaning costs and interfere with how staff and patients interact with the facility. A strategic and targeted approach will keep patients and staff safe with minimal disruption and expense. Some cleaning firms are pivoting to technology to optimise service delivery. Tracking technology means providers can monitor how often areas and assets are utilised and then build cleaning schedules around this profiling. For example: • Tracking technology shows that one reception is only used in the morning. • The service team cleans the reception before and after this period of use.

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• The service team can focus on other areas of the facility until the next clean is required. This targeted approach ensures each area is appropriately serviced and avoids waste and poor performance associated with over or underservicing.

Everyone has a role to play Before COVID-19, visitors and patients had a passive role in ensuring that the hygiene of the facility was maintained. Now, education is paramount in ensuring that everyone is adhering to personal hygiene standards. Hospital managers need to ensure that educational posters are prominently placed around the facility to act as reminders or training aids for anyone visiting the facility. Healthcare facilities also need to ensure they have adequate stocks of hygiene supplies such as hand sanitiser, wipes, gloves, masks and other PPE. Education is only useful if visitors and staff have the resources on hand to implement acquired knowledge. Effective healthcare facility cleaning and hygiene procedures will be undone if personal hygiene protocol isn’t followed. So, focusing on the latter will help ensure the success of the former.

Single-use items are a must The term ‘single-use’ has negative connotations, but it’s important to remember that single-use does not have to mean disposable. Cloths and mops and other cleaning materials can be changed after each use. Changing and washing after

use will drastically reduce the risk of transferring infectious agents without having to throw materials away. To ensure user and patient safety, some PPE does need to be disposed of. Masks should be changed regularly, and gloves need to be changed after every task, even during tasks in high-risk areas. A ‘use’ will vary from task to task, but cleaners need to be careful not to transfer potential infectious agents from one surface or area to another. Mops and cloths should be changed when moving between rooms or zones and even surface types.

Cleaners are essential staff COVID-19 has shown just how essential cleaners are in ensuring public safety. Cleaning professionals have been frontline workers during the pandemic and they will be crucial in making a successful transition into the postCOVID-19 context. Hospital managers need to put as much effort into finding quality cleaning providers as they do into finding nurses, doctors and administrative staff. Quality providers invest in their service teams and ensure facilities have the necessary training and equipment to deliver clean and hygienic facilities. Retaining staff is also essential. Cleaning healthcare facilities requires specialist knowledge, and every time you lose a team member, you lose that knowledge. Fair pay, good working conditions and providing the right tools, equipment and PPE go a long way towards improving retention rates.


feature healthcare cleaning Interactive Clean Hospital Training helps staff secure safe healthcare environments

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o rk, an Essity brand, launched Tork Interactive Clean Hospital Training, an engaging digital training and educational tool to support cleaning services managers and staff in creating hygienic, safe healthcare environments. Tork Interactive Clean Hospital Training is an online, interactive tool designed to make the training process for cleaning healthcare facilities engaging and efficient. The training is based on the Association for the Health Care Environment’s (AHE) Practice Guidance for Health Care Environmental Cleaning, the go-to resource for best-in-class tools, products, education and training. The exercises aim to ensure that

cleaning services managers and their staff carry out tasks according to these recommendations. “We know that cleaning service managers welcome this type of training and education. As the needs can vary across the organisation and in different parts of a hospital, it is important to have a solution such as Tork Interactive Clean Hospital Training that can be accessed from any device, which allows staff to train in a variety of environments,” said Thomas Bergin, Marketing Director – Healthcare, Essity Professional Hygiene. Accompanying the Tork Interactive Clean Hospital Training is the “Train-the-Trainer” presentation, a tool developed to help cleaning service managers in training their teams. According to the recent Essentials Initiative 2020-2021 survey from Essity, more than 7 out of 10 people say they will have higher expectations on the hygiene standards of hospitals after COVID-19. The results indicate that healthcare cleaning staff are more important than ever in helping create hygienic healthcare environments where people can feel safe. “We are dedicated to helping create safe care environments and ultimately help prevent HAIs. As cleaning staff are the first line of defense it is important that they also get the best tools and training available. We have developed a complete range of services and products to support their important work,” said Thomas Bergin. For more information email: kirsty.collard@essity.com

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feature healthcare cleaning

Reducing hospital-acquired infections and the spread of COVID-19 Thorough cleaning and disinfecting has always been a priority in the healthcare environment but has received refreshed prominence during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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ven though most studies indicate that there is a low risk of the COVID-19 virus being transmitted from a surface, the reality is that high-touch surfaces do require more frequent cleaning and disinfection to prevent the spread of the coronavirus as well as other hospital-acquired infections (HAIs) resulting from fungal, bacterial and fungal pathogens. Not surprisingly, the highest risk areas are high-touch surfaces such as bed rails, bedside tables, chairs and patient bathrooms in between cleaning sessions. Pre-saturated disinfecting wipes are regarded as one of the most efficient and effective methods of decontaminating high-touch environmental surfaces as well as non-critical medical devices both in hospitals and other healthcare environments. In fact, there is significant evidence to support the use of disinfecting wipes in preventing crosscontamination and the spread of HAIs. There are a number of different variables that impact the efficacy of disinfecting wipes including the type and concentration of the disinfectant type, the material and construction of the actual wipe, how the disinfectant and the wipe interact with each other, how the wipe is used and applied, and the period the pre-saturated wipe has been stored. Of these factors, the most important and significant is how the disinfectant interacts with the textile substrate. These are facts that Infection Protection Products, manufacturers of sani-touch medical range of products including Medi-Wipes, Medi-Touch,

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Sanispray and Medgiene products, is well aware of. Marketing director Annette Devenish points out that amidst the increased demand for pre-saturated, disinfecting wipes during the COVID-19 pandemic, many new and often untested brands have appeared in the market, the majority of which have little or no research behind their development in terms of the compatibility of the wipe substrate and fluid content. “The challenge with this is that a combination of two substrates can completely change the efficacy of a fluid which is why it’s so important that a disinfecting product’s entire formula is tested, rather than only the active ingredient,” she explains. In a healthcare environment cleaning and disinfecting products should ideally be non-toxic to avoid potentially irritating skin or mucous membranes. Disinfectants should have a broad spectrum, a wide antimicrobial range and act rapidly. They should also keep surfaces wet for the required period of contact time. The sani-touch range of disinfecting wipes offers the solution. A detergent solution loosens dirt while the wipe physically removes bacteria, microorganisms and trapped dirt, grit and grime within the wipe substrate, leaving behind a thin layer of disinfecting fluid which sanitises the surface. This is significantly more effective than a reusable cloth which results in bacteria re-contaminating and even crosscontaminating surfaces. A disposable pre-saturated wipe, on the other hand,

eliminates the potential for crosscontamination. The Medi-touch range, in particular, has been designed for both cleaning and sanitising in a quick, effective and convenient manner without requiring any pre-mixing or buckets of soapy water. Sani-touch’s Medi-wipes, which contain 80 percent ethanol are classified as an intermediate level disinfectant, are used extensively in the healthcare environment. Their broad spectrum of activity includes bactericidal, viricidal, fungicidal and mycobactericidal. The disinfectant wipe fluid dries quickly on a surface. Sani-touch’s medical disinfectant wipes include formulations that have been scientifically developed, tweaked and perfected over many years. The company’s SABS marked products have been audited and verified for more than a decade while compatibility between wipe substrates and fluids have been tried, tested and refined. Even prior to the coronavirus pandemic sani-touch products held SABS 490 and SABS 1853 marks. In 2020 the sani-touch range, including its medical products and hand and surface sanitiser range passed the coronavirus EU 14476 tests. During the COVID-19 pandemic it is more important than ever that only reputable disinfectant wipes and sanitiser brands with proven efficacy are used in healthcare environments.

For more information visit: www.sanitouch.co.za


feature healthcare cleaning | Tork Fighting HAIs with effective hand hygiene procedures

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ospital-acquired infections (HAIs) are still a significant problem for hospitals and healthcare institutions. Each year, millions of patients worldwide are affected by HAIs, also called nosocomial infections, that lead to many complications and are potentially life-threatening. The consequences are grave, as these infections inflict physical pain, hinder recovery

and can sometimes be fatal. HAIs also cause enormous costs for society, which is why there are many organisations including the World Health Organization (WHO) fighting this scourge. According to the WHO, the most effective way to combat HAIs is by practicing hand hygiene. As a healthcare professional, you undoubtedly already know the importance of hand hygiene. In fact, research has shown that nurses are the most compliant when it comes to hand hygiene. But ensuring hand hygiene compliance among all staff is not always easy. You may need support in carrying out good hygiene in practice. Plus, when it comes to visitors and patients, information to create awareness is often required. Besides ensuring good hand hygiene in hospitals, it’s important to identify risk areas and learn about preventive actions to minimise the risk for spread of infections. Preventing HAIs has never been more important. According to the WHO, there is a worldwide consensus that action is urgently needed to deal with the growing problem of antibiotic resistance. In healthcare, effective infection prevention and control (IPC) is one solution, where hand hygiene compliance is a cornerstone.

When it comes to preventing HAIs, in addition to easy access to hand sanitisers and wash stations, knowledge about hygiene opportunities and how and when to perform hand hygiene is vital. In a recent survey, as many as 8 out of 10 healthcare professionals said that they would like to improve their hand hygiene compliance. This shows us just how aware nurses and doctors are of their part in the prevention of spread of diseases and infections, as well as their commitment to patient health. As a provider of many of the hygiene products found in hospital environments, Tork, an Essity brand, support healthcare professionals in their effort to achieve hand hygiene compliance with online hygiene training. Based on the WHO’s 5 Moments for Hand Hygiene, Tork’s online training solution enables staff training and improves compliance for each of these critical moments. Click on the following link to access Tork Clean Hands Training: https://www.tork.co.za/hygiene/ good-hygiene/tork-clean-care/healthcare/cleanhands/sign-up

Reduce risk and secure the new hygiene standard with Tork When hands-free hygiene is crucial in order to reduce cross-contamination and meet regulations, Tork has all the right products to offer. One-at-a-time dispensing reduces waste and helps improve hygiene. • •

Good healthcare starts with good hygiene

 eakserve Paper Towel – offers the P highest capacity of up to 2 132 sheets SmartOne Toilet Paper System – reduces blockages and rolls last longer Tork Soap Systems – giving you up to 2 500 doses

Contact Tork to set up a trial Contact us on tork.rsa@essity.com or www.tork.co.za

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educational

POPIA implementation – why organisations should embrace privacy laws

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ew survey findings show that local data privacy laws positively affect business, helping organisations to mitigate risks, improve trust and protect their customers’ data better. With the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPIA) now in effect from July 1, most businesses have implemented compliance strategies. If your company has not begun the compliance process in view of increased complexities or budget gaps, the only solution is to start right away. Notwithstanding short-term hiccups such as compliance costs and directional changes in marketing strategies, privacy regulations benefit companies in the long run. They increase customer confidence, maintain and uplift brand value and, most importantly, decrease the likelihood of a data breach, says Andrew Bourne of Zoho Corporation.

Evidence of benefits According to a new survey conducted by WorldWideWorx and commissioned by Zoho to understand the state of data privacy in Africa, an overwhelming 81 percent of South African businesses state that regional data privacy protection laws have had either no effect or a very positive effect on their business operations. This is true, and we have seen this happen earlier with other previously instituted regulations such as the GDPR. In fact, a 2019 Cisco report found that GDPRcompliant organisations eventually saw numerous benefits, including streamlined business processes, increased sales and increased investor appeal. Proven compliance with a state law also increases brand credibility automatically. Awareness about aggressive data harvesting and reselling is increasing, and end users are today privy to the nefarious ways in which data-dependent companies

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monetise and use their information. Privacy-conscious consumers – a rapidly growing demographic – want an explicit assurance that the companies they trust their data with will protect them against misuse and breaches. We even saw privacy taking centre stage during the recent Apple Worldwide Developers Conference 2021, which further shows that data confidentiality practices are becoming integral to business longevity and trustworthiness. Knowing that a company adheres to local privacy laws organically improves a customer’s willingness to share their data without mistrust, and increases the chances of retention and referrals.

Overcoming bottlenecks Complexities are inevitable. Our survey, for instance, reveals that 34 percent of South African businesses report an increased cost of governance because of privacy laws, while 30 percent are concerned that the legal mandates will directly affect their marketing programmes. A lesser but still significant 28 percent state a general difficulty in navigating the intricacies of the overall compliance process. In terms of overheads, compliance processes typically affect small and medium businesses the most, because mandates, such as appointing a privacy/ information officer, can demand extra budgetary allocations. Then there’s the expenses that come with taking expert legal counsel to comprehend the regulatory requirements better. But it’s important to look at the costs as inherent to going digital. Today, most businesses already spend hundreds of thousands of Rands implementing digital systems to improve business efficiency. It is similarly crucial for organisations to make room in their IT budgets for steps such as appointing an in-house privacy officer or getting external

consultation. These measures will help to have a clear understanding of privacy and security laws such as POPIA and build a robust digital framework that’s flexible enough to accommodate newer processes when fresh laws crop up across regions. On the other hand, an effectiveness drop in marketing campaigns will be acutely felt only by organisations that are heavily dependent on third-party ad platforms for their revenue, as POPIA regulates “consent management” for such practices. The law requires that businesses inform consumers beforehand about every single point of data collection/ tracking and request their consent. This includes the passive data gathering by third-party trackers and ad platforms that are employed by businesses for marketing purposes. When given a choice to opt in or out of being tracked by unknown third parties, consumers will largely choose not to consent. However, this change brought forth by POPIA poses more of a moral decision than a marketing challenge for businesses; it pushes them to choose between unaffected sales targets or protecting customer data. Organisations that make the right choice have a greater chance of staying relevant for the longer term.

Embracing the positives Not only does compliance strengthen data protection, erase the risk of arrests and fines, and greatly reduce the risk of reputational damage in the event of a breach, it also questions business ethics, entrenches customer trust and improves operational efficiency. Privacy laws are, in other words, not something to be resisted but embraced. Bourne is the regional manager: Africa at Zoho Corporation.


facilities management review

Understanding the changing environment of workplace cleaning Wahl Bartmann The modern-day working environment has been irrevocably changed by the arrival of the coronavirus pandemic. But safety, health and cleanliness measures for your office or factory are about much more than fighting COVID-19, and involve much more than just soap and water.

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he pandemic is an understandable first issue to think of when one talks about workplace cleaning. I believe however that the conversation should be spread wider to also look at how offices and factories have started to change before the virus arrived, and how these changes will more than likely continue long after the coronavirus pandemic has subsided,” says the Group CEO of Fidelity Services, Wahl Bartmann. Productivity and efficiency were key design drivers for places of work in the past, but Bartmann believes that safety and cleanliness have now moved up the list of considerations. For those companies who will still operate from a physical brick-and-mortar building, they will need to ensure physical distancing as a first step to protect the health of their staff and customers. “As a cleaning industry, we need to show our customers that we understand the importance of strict health and safety measures when it comes to workplace cleaning, as well as the changing environment within which our customers are operating. It should not matter if you are cleaning an office to prevent the spread of the coronavirus or just doing a more ‘routine’ deep clean, your focus should be on the best interest of your customer at all times,” says Bartmann. “The pandemic has tested most aspects of the South African economy, and the cleaning sector is no exception. We have all had to learn how to reinvent ourselves and how to put the safety and health of our customers and personnel front and centre in everything we do and protect them from the coronavirus.

Operators in the cleaning industry need to ensure they are up to date with latest cleaning protocols that have been set down for the sector.” Other matters that should be part of any conversation about workplace cleanliness: •  Air quality: Ventilation and maximising fresh air in a workplace has been thrusted into the limelight by the pandemic. More people are now concerned by the risks of small rooms or confined spaces where infectious airborne particles can quickly multiply and create a hotbed for cross-contamination. •  Layout changes: Open plan offices might have been stimulating for efforts to encourage staff engagement and creativity, but it also makes the potential transmission of infectious airborne particles much easier. This might now necessitate some rotation of team members. •  The return of the tea trolley: Workplace kitchens can inadvertently become a confined space where people gather for lunch or tea, and potentially infect each other if sick. This might mean that hot beverages such as coffee or tea will now be served directly at people’s desks. •  Screening and health vetting: The completion of some form of health questionnaire for any visitor or delivery person might become standard procedure well into the future. Building managers will be able to protect the safety of their employees and the cleanliness of the facility by strictly vetting any outside visitors before giving them access.

•  Meetings for meetings’ sake: Back-to-back meetings in small, cramped meeting rooms pose a risk to the health and well-being of those involved. Video and virtual meetings will replace these in-person meetings, and meeting rooms will be upgraded to incorporate video conferencing technology. •  More frequent and deeper cleaning: Companies are asking for more regular cleaning of their premises, and for more detailed cleaning since the start of the pandemic. This will more than likely stay with us for the foreseeable future. •  Better engagement with customers: Customers want to know what products are being used, how you are cleaning their premises, and that you have their best interests in mind at all times. Questions can be expected, and honest engagement is the best course to follow. “We are more than halfway through 2021 and still no one is entirely sure of what the year holds in store for us. The best way to approach the remainder of this year is to remember the hard lessons that 2020 has taught us, so that we are as best prepared as possible for what lies ahead. “The cleaning industry has an enormous responsibility that rests on its shoulders to guide South Africans safely into the future,” concludes Bartmann. Fidelity Cleaning Services is a member of the Fidelity Services Group and provides specialised cleaning services to corporate customers.

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laundry review

Modern, digital and mobile order picking solution Advancing digitalisation and creating more efficient work processes through modern solutions – this is a major and important goal in laundries. With an innovative app solution, SoCom Informationssysteme GmbH contributes to this, by means of the texEasyPick app, laundry orders can now be picked digitally and thus paperless. Not only is the picking process facilitated by a packing sequence that can be stored in texEasyPick, but the control of orders is also made very easy thanks to the app and an associated online portal. Transmission errors from handwritten quantity notes on printed packaging lists are a thing of the past, as all information is transferred directly and digitally to TIKOS, the laundry software

The texEasyPick app from SoCom enables paperless and efficient order picking.

from SoCom. Orders can be checked for completeness and correctness at any-time, and prioritisation of orders is made very easy and is clear. In addition, replacement articles agreed with the individual customers can be stored, which can be delivered if there are insufficient article quantities. Like all SoCom software, web and app solutions, the texEasyPick app

is available for rental or outright purchase. With a manageable monthly fee, all SoCom products can be used flexibly in operations. Customers can now decide in advance which processes in the laundry should be digitalised and where time and costs should be saved. For more information visit: www.socom.de

Innovations, textile hygiene and reusable products

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he coronavirus pandemic has created a new awareness of the topic of hygiene, which has become a driver of innovation in many industries. The opportunities this holds for the textile care industry are detailed here by Dr. Timo Hammer, the CEO of Hohenstein Life Science & Care. In an recent interview (abridged) with R+W Textilservice focussing on the run-up to the Texcare International exhibition scheduled for 27 November to 1 December 2021, Dr. Hammer, who is also the MD of Quality Assurance Association for Proper Laundry Care Quality, talks about the innovations which he expects at the leading trade fair to take place in Frankfurt, Germany.

What has changed since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic? Dr. Hammer: “At the beginning of the pandemic, a lot of laundries approached us with many practical questions. For instance, how do I protect my employees when laundry infected with COVID-19 is delivered or, how do I organise it so that my driver is allowed to deliver laundry despite the curfew? Hygiene used to be ‘nice to have’,

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however today it is a basic requirement, also to protect your own employees. Hygiene is a concept employees have to understand thoroughly. We are constantly providing support with training. In return, the companies can also answer the questions of their customers, the hospitals and care facilities, professionally.”

The pandemic has focused on textile hygiene. What are the growth opportunities for this worldwide? Dr. Hammer: “Enormous, and this is only just the beginning. This is due to a massive and growing awareness of hygiene. The entire world is dealing with this very issue. In holiday regions, for example, end customers ask the hotels what their hygiene management entails and how laundry is treated. In return, the hotel laundries will need to have a hygiene certificate.”

Textile hygiene is not negotiable in healthcare. What are the advantages of recyclable textiles as opposed to disposable items? Dr. Hammer: “At first glance, disposable products are often less expensive, but

if you compare the costs over the entire period of use, that is, the ‘Total Cost of Ownership’, reusable items offer a better alternative. The barrier function and protective effect of reusable surgical clothing also significantly exceeds disposable products. To this end, a study by McQuerry was published in the American Journal of Infection Control in 2020. Reusable items, apart from price also address the issue of sustainability. Many companies in the healthcare sector can now be certified as sustainable and textiles play an important role in this. In addition, the wearing comfort of reusable clothing is higher and it can be adapted to the customer in fit and size.”

What are the trends towards reusability in the future? Dr. Hammer: “If the trend towards reusability is to continue, laundries must have a quality management system in place that ensures the preservation of value in the case of disinfecting treatment. The detergent manufacturers are aware of this and are developing products that contribute to both hygiene and longevity.”


laundry review What is the role of digitalisation in ensuring complete hygiene management from laundry to client? Dr. Hammer: “Yes, this is indeed an important issue and there is a lot happening in this space at the moment. In recent years laundry digitisation has mainly been aimed at parts traceability with the assistance of RFID chips. Here it makes sense to link the data from hygiene management and thus to digitise the transparency of the hygiene chain. In the area of digital, seamless hygiene management at the data level, I expect many innovations. However, in order to prove disinfection on a microbiological level, it is still necessary to take a copy test or wash contaminated samples. However, data from the control points developed according to the HACCP concept, at which microbiological checks are carried out, can be integrated into an overall digital concept. This increases the speed of the reaction and the customer can receive information in real-time.”

Did the pandemic become a driver of innovation in the field of hygiene? Dr. Hammer: “In the field of antiviral textiles, there have been many beneficial innovations recently. This used to be a niche area, however innovations are now the order of the day. When antiviral substances such as copper are integrated into the fibre, the effect is usually permanent. It is important to check whether the coating fits the application. If the antiviral effect, e.g. only works in moisture, the textile must not be used mainly in dry environments. Since hygiene is of vital importance in all areas of life today, hygiene monitoring is one of the main drivers of innovation.

What contribution can Texcare International make in creating more awareness of the topic of textile hygiene? Dr. Hammer: “I think it’s good that in the run-up to and during Texcare International the topic of hygiene

will be brought into the spotlight and that there will be talks and forums at the trade fair addressing this prominent issue. Textile hygiene will be the foremost issue for visitors and this showcase should highlight the importance of professional textile care in combatting the pandemic and interrupting the chain of infection.”

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new products Environmentally friendly cleaning and sanitising solutions A ready-to-use disinfectant and sanitising solution created with the use of new mixing technology, promises residual long-lasting protection against viruses and bacteria. The sustainable and environmentfriendly technology also offers safety in handling. Mixing and blending technology is used to render multiple, normally incompatible, biocides to be chemically stable, allowing them to work synergistically together. The anti-microbial impact of the combined actives is said to be magnified, leading to the need for significantly reduced amounts of each active ingredient. In addition, the active ingredients are bound together on a molecular core and form a non-leaching bond with most surfaces, allowing treated surfaces to retain the anti-microbial properties even when the surface is repeatedly touched or cleaned. Launched in Norway in 2005 by Biosphere Innovation, the BarrierTech proprietary technology is now held by Vogt Holding and, according to the company, is the ideal biocide offering a unique combination of properties, including:

• A wide spectrum of activity • Acts rapidly • Microbicidal at ultra-low concentrations • Cracks biofilms and prevents new ones from forming • Works under dirty conditions, not easily quenched • Biodegradable, non-toxic, with a low cyto-toxicology • Low resistance accumulation • Compatible in most applications By using very low concentrations of each active ingredient, and by mixing them in a specific sequence, BarrierTech states that is has developed a very powerful disinfectant that is not classified as toxic or corrosive. The combination of multiple active ingredients and the molecular structure of the disinfectant products prohibits a build-up of resistance to the disinfectant. BarrierTech is designed to act against microbes both physically and chemically, in order to eliminate mutation and prevent organisms from reproducing. Physical attack is achieved through the alteration of

the surface structure of the treated area at the molecular level, so that microbes present in the surrounding environment, such as in water or air, cannot attach. This feature aims to reduce the presence of microbes and provide long-lasting protection by inhibiting organisms’ ability to proliferate and to form a selfprotective bio-film. The biocides also act chemically to induce cell lysis, or the bursting of the cell walls, which is said to result in the rapid sanitisation of surfaces. Products are suitable for use in a number of industrial sectors, such as food and beverage, metalworking, healthcare, shipping, oil and gas, in fact any environment that needs to be kept clean and sanitised. For more information visit: www.barriertechsa.co.za

The air you breathe could be deadly It was during May 2021 when the deadly Delta variant of the coronavirus was first detected in South Africa, showing a ‘significantly more infectious’ spread than any of the previous COVID-19 strains. A recent study performed by Professor Raina Macintyre, head of the biosecurity research programme at the University of New South Wales’s Kirby Institute in Australia found that, “In an indoor space where ventilation isn’t adequate, somebody with a Delta infection could have come and gone, but the virus is still lingering in the air, meaning you could get infected.” She went on to say, “People are still stuck in that mindset of hand sanitiser and washing your hands, when actually the message we need to be getting out there is it’s in the air you breathe”. So disinfect your ambient space

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and wear a proper fitting mask (covering your mouth and nose). Burt Rodrigues, CEO of Biodx a South African biotech producing disinfectant products, confirms this by saying, “They have identified that the Delta variant stays suspended in the air for far longer than previous variants with a far higher transmission rate. Research companies that were paying attention since the outset of this pandemic had geared up for future variants, and have developed materials for such outcomes with aerosol foggers. Today these formulas have been tested for safety and compliance before being put out into the market. Now we have some new tools in disinfectants to help fight this Delta variant and make our atmosphere safe.” For more information visit: www.biodx.co


new products Introducing Comac Fleet Care Johannesburg-based cleaning equipment distributor The Equipment Company recently introduced what the company describes as a unique cleaning solution. Comac Fleet Care (CFC) technology is designed by Comac, a major Italian cleaning equipment manufacturer, for the management of cleaning machine fleets to increase efficiency and reduce costs. Comac Fleet Care is a tool that enables the optimal management of Comac cleaning machine fleets. Onboard digital management makes it possible to communicate with

the cleaning machines, collect data and transform this into meaningful, useful data for the effective management of cleaning operations. The Comac auto scrubbing machine equipped with CFC uses wireless internet services to constantly stay online. This helps to keep track of usage information such as who is currently using the machine, elapsed battery life, and period in use. Comac Fleet Care enabled cleaning machines are said to be ideal for modern, tech-savvy individuals because of the fact that all this information can be tracked using the user-friendly mobile application software. The app can be downloaded onto any device, making it easier to manage CFC-enabled cleaning machines. In terms of maintenance, this Comac cleaning machine has the ability to track and observe its own status. This means that it will automatically send an alert message to the department responsible for servicing this machine should it detect any fault or unresolved issue. CFC technology is available on all of the latestgeneration Comac floor scrubbers, even the most compact models such as the Vispa EVO and Vispa XL, which can be equipped with the CFC Light version. Comac cleaning machines are available to rent or purchase at fixed monthly rates. For more information visit: www.theequipmentcompany.co.za

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CLEANLINESS FOR HEALTH

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TWO EVENTS – ONE VENUE Hygiene has never been more important than now!

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African Cleaning Review July/August 2021

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