Your industry news - first Number 1 for Recruitment
We strongly recommend viewing Cleanzine full size in your web browser. Click our masthead above to visit our website version.
Rafael Cobos AMIMarEST, of Futureclean Assured Systems, reports on the future of the cleaning products formulation business
Household, Industrial and Institutional Ingredients (H3i) was a unique UK event for everyone involved in formulating HI&I cleaning products. Over two days, about 70 companies represented the full spectrum of ingredients and showcased new technologies to the cleaning products formulation market.
As an independent consultant to many companies and industries, I took one such client along with me and I illustrated how these new technologies and ingredients from several different manufacturers could be implemented within my client's existing product lines, ensuring current and future legislative compliance.
All cleaning products, whether they are for domestic use in laundry detergents or shampoos, or whether they are for industrial or commercial applications, are a mixture of many ingredients that work together to perform the cleaning task that has been set out. It was the manufacturers of these ingredients - firms with worldwide reach, which were represented at the H3i exhibition. They included Dow Chemicals, AkzoNobel, Brenntag Specialities, Dupont and many more.
The exhibition also featured a conference hosted by BACS (British Association of Chemical Specialties) and presented by various experts in key areas for the future development of cleaning products and their regulatory constraints. Over the two days, a number of key areas were discussed, which directly impacts the cleaning products industry and hence the cleaning industry as a whole. They included REACH (EU), sustainable cleaning and the new Biocidal Products Directive (EU), due to come into force on 1st January 2013. Under the 'sustainability' banner, we heard how trends in new and innovative ingredients are coming to market, derived from biotechnological processes and other renewable sources, with the aim of replacing ingredients considered hazardous to health and to the environment.
One key area of innovation highlighted at H3i, although certainly not new, is in the selective use of microbes to degrade soiling, commonly called bio-remediation, and is an ever-expanding technology. In the role of a consultant, I have employed microbes in a formulation (microbes coupled with surfactants and emulsifiers) to degrade oils (hydrocarbon), greases, fats and for waste treatment and have then devised the whole cleaning system to utilise this technology.
With the ever-tightening grasp of national and international environmental regulations and occupational health standards for the end-user, the exhibiting companies showcased their ingredients as replacements that not only comply with, but which also often outperform their the ingredient they are replacing. The key to the implementation of these new technologies is in the formulation (or re-formulation) of products, and the understanding of the interactions of their ingredients with each other and to the surfaces with which they come into contact.
31st May 2012