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New whitepaper from REACT explores future of commercial cleaning technology
Specialist cleaning service provider, REACT Specialist Cleaning, has this week released a new white paper in collaboration with the National Biofilms Innovation Centre, entitled ‘Biofilms & barrier technologies: The future of commercial cleaning’. The report examines the risks posed by biofilms and the potential of new 'barrier technologies' to mitigate them.
A biofilm is an immobile community of microorganisms that stick to each other and to surfaces. They can form almost anywhere, and grow as the microorganisms multiply and attach to other communities.
Biofilms present health risks to humans and animals because they offer refuge to potentially pathogenic bacteria, viruses (including Covid-19), and fungi. Without the right care they can create food safety issues, contaminate water supplies, and ultimately cause harmful infection.
Given their biocidal resilience, biofilms are difficult to remove using conventional cleaning products. Most of these products - even many that claim to 'kill 99.9% of germs' - will leave harmful bacteria behind after application because they cannot penetrate the protective film that the microorganisms form.
The report describes how 'barrier technologies' (or simply 'barrier tech') can prevent the formation of biofilms. They do this by making appropriate surfaces antimicrobial themselves. There are two main types:
* Those that apply a coating containing microbial materials, such as biocides, copper or silver, to an existing surface
* Those that create a new surface with a structural make-up that ruptures or repels microbial cells
"The pandemic has encouraged organisations to rethink how they use cleaning services,” argues Shaun Doak, CEO of REACT Specialist Cleaning. “It is now well known that hygiene and cleanliness have a significant impact on employee health - and, as a result, productivity. People need reassurances that the spaces they live and work in are safe. But to demonstrate the power of cleaning, cleaning providers need to do more than just make their cleaning teams visible."
The report provides three examples of real barrier-tech products that cleaning operatives can use in public spaces. It also provides professional advice related to buying effective products and using them correctly.
William Green, innovation and partnership manager at National Biofilms Innovation Centre, says:
"The impact of biofilms on health and wellbeing, both at home and in the workplace, is significant, with effects of the pandemic still being felt. Combined with the looming threat of antimicrobial resistance, it has never been more important to develop new technologies to combat this growing threat.
"NBIC is bringing together companies like REACT, as well as academics, manufacturers and regulators to fast track the development of new effective treatments to prevent and remove biofilms."
REACT is a specialist cleaning services provider that goes beyond everyday cleaning to tackle problems that non-specialists can't cope with. The company works in a vast range of environments, from hotels to prisons, crime scenes to cruise ships and public spaces to private hospitals. Innovation is a huge part of what separates REACT from its competition, says the company; its expert team works using the latest techniques and technologies to get the best results for its clients with minimal environmental impact.
The NBIC is an Innovation Knowledge Centre funded by the Biotechnology & Biological Sciences Research Council and Innovate UK. Its mission is to establish a network of research and innovation capacity catalysing collaboration with industry in the study of biofilms to achieve breakthrough innovation.
To download a copy of Biofilms & barrier technologies: The future of commercial cleaning, visit:
9th February 2023