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Helping create a greener future

18 April 2024

Satino by WEPA is one of the leading suppliers of Sustainable hygiene products supplier Satino by WEPA will be attending this year’s Interclean in Amsterdam. Here, Alasdair Sharp discusses how products can assist businesses in achieving their sustainability goals within the rapidly evolving landscape of the cleaning and hygiene industry.

AS BUSINESSES' sustainability priorities continue to soar, one area that continues to be overlooked within green strategies is the washroom. However, even small changes in cleaning, hygiene and procurement practices within this area can have a measurable impact. 

In the cleaning sector specifically, the industry is currently experiencing a significant shift in line with the end user’s demand for greener products, with more customers now changing their buying patterns to be more sustainable. 

The easiest place to start therefore is by reviewing suppliers, ensuring to opt for those with the best eco credentials. For instance, innovations from manufacturers that process post-consumer cardboard into usable hygiene paper, produced entirely without bleaching, can reduce the environmental footprint of your hygiene papers by up to a huge 70%.

This is because the paper industry ranks among the top five most energy-intensive industries and accounts for approximately 2% of direct industrial CO2 emissions. Additionally the pulp and paper industry utilises between 33-40% of all industrial wood traded globally, contributing to deforestation and biodiversity loss. Given tightening deforestation regulations across the EU, the need for alternative fibres has never been clearer.

Papers crafted from old corrugated cardboard (OCC) represent the latest breakthrough in combating deforestation. The production process, marked by lower energy and water consumption, capitalises on renewable energy sources for shredding and pulping phases. The fibres are also well-suited for recycling, as it is typically made from premium fibres that have already undergone processing. These fibres retain their strength and length, resulting in robust products with a high level of quality and durability.

Opting for hygiene papers derived from OCC signifies a strategic leap towards eco-initiatives, fostering a circular economy by preserving valuable materials within resource streams. The ripple effect on a facility's sustainability strategy is substantial, reinforcing the idea that even small changes can result in big impacts.

Considerations for facilities managers

It's crucial to monitor not only the products in the washroom, but also the packaging they come in. 12 million tonnes of plastic find its way into the ocean every single year, which equates to 8 million pieces of plastic entering the ocean every day. Switching to plastic-free items is a small change that facilities managers can make, yet it can help to reduce environmental impact and support marine life.

While the liquids used in washrooms might not be the first consideration for facilities managers aiming for a plastic-free environment, they are also equally as crucial. Businesses and facilities managers should steer clear of products containing polyethylene, polypropylene, and nylon, which can break down into microplastics. Opting for liquid and foam soaps free of these harmful materials instead supports a greener hygiene approach. By choosing wisely, managers play a vital role in reducing microplastic pollution.

Finally, the adoption of touch-free technology is key for curbing energy wastage within washrooms. From timed taps to paper and soap dispensers that optimise consumption, these innovations not only prevent wastage but also align with sustainability goals. Excessive waste and purchasing vast numbers of supplies can be detrimental to a facility’s sustainability targets, making touch-free technology key to achieving a more planet-friendly facility. As well as limiting damage to the environment, this sustainable solution to energy efficiency also limits expenditure on bills. An added benefit to touch-free tech is the reduced number of touch points, helping to limit the risk of spreading germs in the washroom.

With the increasing availability of more responsible options, washroom products do not need to conflict with business’ green goals or commercial targets. Being sustainable can give your business an advantage against competitors amongst end users or partners looking for green products and suppliers, making it a worthwhile investment from a commercial perspective.


Alasdair Sharp is UKI sales manager at Satino by WEPA

For more information visit www.satino-by-wepa.com/en/