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Honouring World Health Day by protecting indoor air quality
Avmor, Canada's leading manufacturer of professional cleaning solutions for the Jan/San and foodservice markets, believes that the professional cleaning industry should honour this day by focusing on ways to protect human health... and at the top of its list is indoor air quality.
According to Mike Sawchuk, the company's recently-appointed chief business development officer, IAQ is an issue that just does not seem to be going away.
"Even though the professional cleaning industry has introduced many new products and technologies that help protect IAQ, millions of people still use facilities every day with poor IAQ that can negatively impact their physical and mental health," he argues.
To back up his claims, he points to the following:
* The US Environmental Protection Agency, the American Lung Association and the World Health Organisation all view indoor air pollution as one of the greatest risks to human health.
* Researchers now connect poor IAQ with allergies, asthma, reproductive and developmental problems - and even cancer.
* Poor IAQ can adversely affect employee health and productivity. The EPA estimates this costs US businesses alone "tens of billions of dollars per year."
* Conversely, the EPA believes improvements in the indoor air environment may substantially raise employee morale and productivity, and reduce healthcare costs.
Among the steps Mike suggests the professional cleaning industry can take to address these challenges are:
* Find and eradicate the source of poor IAQ: "One source often overlooked is carpet and upholstery," says Mike. "In most facilities, restorative cleaning of carpet and upholstery using effective cleaning solutions should be performed at least once, if not twice, per year."
* Use only green-certified products. Along with UL Ecologo certifications, Avmor has received Greenguard Gold certifications for several products. "Greenguard has some of the most stringent standards in the industry for IAQ, ensuring certified products can be used safely in sensitive environments such as schools and healthcare facilities," says Mike.
* Install 15 feet of matting at all building entries.
* Advise facilities managers to air out facilities in which new furniture, carpet, or floors have been installed, where floor stripping and finishing has occurred, or where there has been extensive painting.
* Clean custodian closets/cleaning cupboards, make sure there are no intake vents in or near the closets, "and conduct an audit of the cleaning products in the closet...dispose of expired or old products," suggests Mike.
* Select closed-loop dilution control systems that help optimise the efficacy of cleaning products and help protect IAQ.
* Avoid the use of artificially-fragranced cleaning solutions, deodorisers, and aerosol sprays, or products with volatile organic compounds or petroleum based fragrances.
"And make sure all equipment used for cleaning, from vacuum cleaners to floor machines, have features that help protect IAQ," adds Mike. "Protecting IAQ takes a system approach and includes every cleaning tool we use."
Avmor was founded in 1948 by Avrum Morrow and Henry Chinks. Avmor's commitment to ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 as well as cGMP (current North American Good Manufacturing Practices) procedures signifies an understanding that maintaining an environmentally sound, sustainable expertise is a work ethic as much as it is an integral component of Avmor's UL Ecologo and Greenguard Gold certified solutions.
"Our FDA certification attests to our dedication to quality, performance and commitment as well as our responsibility to always provide optimal cleaning solutions while maintaining and enhancing health & safety standards," says Mike. "Remaining Canada's leading provider of professional cleaning solutions, Avmor's sustainable and traditional cleaning solutions and training programmes promote effective, efficient, healthier and sustainable practices that exceed performance expectations and environmental requirements."
7th April 2016