*Cleanzine_logo_2a.jpgCleanzine: your weekly cleaning and hygiene industry newsletter 18th April 2024 Issue no. 1110

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It's just sanitiser - isn't it? All sanitisers are not created equal – says Bunzl Canada

* Just-Hand-Sanitizer.jpgSince the start of the pandemic, more companies than ever before have been producing and selling hand sanitisers. With so many new brands on the market, it is important to choose a product that kills germs effectively, and is both pleasant and safe to use.

Here Bunzl Canada’s team of cleaning and hygiene experts explains how to select hand sanitisers that are safe and effective for any facility…

“When choosing a hand sanitiser, look for one that's alcohol-based and check its alcohol content. Alcohol-based hand sanitisers are the most effective at killing germs and have undergone more stringent testing than non-alcohol-based formulas.

When it comes to the percentage of alcohol in a hand sanitiser, Health Canada recommends at least 60% alcohol to help stop the spread of germs.

There are two different kinds of alcohol, called ethanol, found in hand sanitiser -- technical and food-grade. In Spring 2020, Health Canada approved the use of tech-grade hand sanitisers in place of the food-grade sanitisers many of us are familiar with, as supplies to produce the latter have run low.

What is the difference?

Tech-grade ethanol is a stronger type of alcohol than food-grade and requires a case-by-case evaluation by Health Canada to ensure that the product is effective and safe for use. Tech-grade sanitisers are also required to have warning labels saying they should be used by adults and are not recommended for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. To ensure you are getting a safe product, the number one thing to look for when selecting a tech-grade sanitiser is that it's been approved by Health Canada.

The not-so-secret formula to effective hand hygiene:

It is no secret that formula makes a big difference when it comes to the products we use to keep us safe and hand sanitisers are no exception. Look for products that will not only kill germs but are also pleasant for people to use. These could include sanitisers with moisturising ingredients, fragrance-free sanitisers, or sanitisers with perfumes added to mask the smell of stronger alcohols. Bunzl's product experts can provide you with a wide range of options to choose from.

Proper application: when and how:

Hand sanitisers should primarily be used when soap and water are not readily available for proper handwashing. They are great ‘on the go’, but should not be used on hands with visible dirt on them as it will not effectively clean them.

When it comes to the how-to's of hand hygiene, it is common to hear about proper hand washing techniques, but not about proper hand sanitiser usage. When using hand sanitiser, follow these two simple steps to get the most out of the product:
1. Use just enough to coat hands including fingertips, thumbs and in between fingers. Using more will not kill germs more effectively and will use more product than necessary.

2. Rub hands together for 15-20 seconds to allow the hand sanitiser to dry.

Drug Identification Numbers, or DIN, are given to products that have undergone and passed a review by Health Canada. Hand sanitisers that are DIN-registered have been tested for effectiveness and user safety.

Buy from trusted brands and suppliers:

With the drastic increase in the number of companies producing hand sanitiser over the last seven months, it is important to purchase reputable brands and work with trusted suppliers that thoroughly vet both the manufacturer and the product before offering them for sale.


26th November 2020

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