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Then and now
The cleaning industry has been through some “The most common pack size we supply
major changes in the past 25 years, not least has reduced from a 25 litre drum weighing
in the diversification of products, greater onus well over 25kg to packs comprising two
on health and safety and increased awareness five litre containers weighing around
of environmental and sustainability issues. But 10kg,” says Mike Allen.
despite the changes the need for cost control
Product formulations are also evolving to
remains as important as ever.
support sustainability, for example by
Bleach was used extensively a quarter of a
enabling cleaning at lower temperatures
century ago, according to Mike Allen, a
with reduced energy requirements. Better
technical consultant at JohnsonDiversey who
With concentrates water is added at the point formulations, equipment and processes also
joined the company in the 1970s. His role now
of use rather than during manufacture and then reduce rewash rates which helps deliver
includes providing advice on cleaning and
being transported through the supply chain. sustainability with controlled costs.
hygiene to hospitality and catering customers
The amount of product required for any given
Safety is always important and legislation has
as well as helping to develop new systems.
amount of cleaning takes up less storage
become even stricter over the past 25 years
space but benefits such as fewer chemical
Bleach is a good disinfectant but deactivates
covering everything from packaging, labelling,
miles and reduced packaging are now just as
very quickly if the surface being cleaned is
control of substances, formulations, waste and
important to customers when they switch to
contaminated, is very aggressive, corrodes
manual handling. Manufacturers have
stainless steel and reacts with other chemicals
responded by working with the regulators and
to produce undesirable by-products.
Concentrates work best when used with
customers to innovate and introduce new
controlled dosing and dilution systems. These
products that address these issues. In many
“For these reasons and others there has been a
were quite basic 25 years ago but advances
cases risk is engineered out of the cleaning
switch to quaternary ammonium cleaning
have delivered the accuracy and simplicity that
process. For example, closed dosing systems
products that are easier to use while offering
customers need to eliminate wastage, provide
prevent users from coming into contact with
similar or better levels of performance without
consistency, manage cost in use and ensure
undiluted products, and cleaning tools and
the side effects,” says Mike Allen.
safety for users. Early automated systems were
equipment are colour coded so that they can
Sustainability was barely discussed 25 year electromechanical but the latest equipment is
be used more safely and efficiently.
ago but it’s now top of many companies’ fully electronic with digital interfaces that
The science of cleaning is more widely
agenda. JohnsonDiversey has always been at integrate with computer systems to provide real
understood today. The major companies invest
the forefront of sustainability and was one of time information for users to monitor
heavily in development of products and trial them
the first cleaning companies to promote the performance, efficiency and costs. Even the
extensively with customers to ensure they deliver
use of concentrated products, which offer a simpler dosing systems have evolved with novel
what they promise before they are launched to the
number of benefits. designs to promote better accuracy and safety.
market. Support has also changed. International
Another aspect of sustainability is
companies like JohnsonDiversey maintain large
packaging. JohnsonDiversey has made a
research and development and technical teams
number of advances in pack designs
based in different countries to provide local and
and the materials used that has helped
global capabilities.
to reduce the amount of raw materials,
promoted recycling and simplified waste
disposal. Pack sizes have also shrunk to
help users simplify operations and
comply with manual handling
| TOMORROW’S CLEANING | The future of our cleaning industry
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