29 January Making Good Bacteria Work for Us
By Thomas Grimm
Perhaps without intention, humans have created numerous sustainability challenges that are threatening our planet and our health. Not the least of these is the ever-increasing toxic world we live in. The solutions to many of these problems are all around us if we look. For instance, bio-mimicry is an approach to innovation that seeks sustainable solutions to human challenges by emulating nature’s patterns and strategies(1).
In the last 50 years, the use of chemicals has increased 3900 percent, from 10 million tons to more than 400 million tons annually(2). In the US alone, 3.1 million tons of these chemicals are used for cleaning purposes(3). Though chemicals provide many benefits in industry, manufacturing, and healthcare, the use of toxic chemicals to clean our homes, offices and commercial spaces has reached alarming levels affecting our health and the planet’s well-being. It is time to look for better solutions.
Nature’s approach uses enzymes and bacteria to breakdown and transform waste materials into the basic components of life. This process is happening all around us on a continual basis. Several companies have taken note of this and have created biotechnology hygiene products that are sustainable and effective. One of those companies is Montreal, CA-based InnuScience, formed 26 years ago by two molecular biology students.
Biotechnology is the use of living systems and organisms to develop commercial products(4). It utilizes three key ingredients to create safe, effective results – surfactants, enzymes, and bacteria. All cleaning products contain surfactants, commonly known as soap. A surfactant helps the cleaning process by lifting dirt from surfaces and solubilizing it in water. Though surfactants are not biotech ingredients, they do have an impact on the environmental friendliness of the product. The key is biodegradability. InnuScience sources mineral and vegetable surfactants that are safe, and breakdown by 90% in less than 14 days.
At the same time, the surfactants are solubilizing the dirt, the bio-active ingredients (enzymes and bacteria) in InnuScience products go to work. Enzymes are bio-mechanical molecules that chemically breakdown organic matter into smaller components which improves the solubilization and also helps the bacteria.
The third, and key, ingredient are the live micro-organisms. Once the dirt and grime are solubilized and initially broken down by the enzymes, the “good” bacteria complete the process by digestion. Bacillus Subtillus is a commonly occurring bacteria in soil and in some foods we eat. It is a non-pathogneic and non-harmful bacteria. In fact, studies have shown that the use of pro-biotic cleaners like InnuScience can lead to a reduction in the formation of pathogenic bacteria colonies on surfaces, without the use of chemical disinfectants(5). In other words, the use of beneficial bacteria can have positive and lasting effects in our homes and workplaces beyond simple cleaning.
InnuScience scientists use different combinations and concentrations of surfactants, enzymes and selectively chosen Bacillus Subtillus bacteria to create a wide range of products that can be used in every type of business or facility. In addition to cleaning, biotechnology excels at human waste and grease degradation, two growing problems throughout the ASEAN community.
Here in Thailand, the hospitality and restaurant industries should be key users and beneficiaries of biotechnology cleaning products. Much of Thailand’s tourism business is based on its natural beauty, but many resort areas are being negatively impacted by overuse and pollution. Hotels that switch to InnuScience products such as Nu-Kleen Smell and Nu-Bio Scrub general purpose cleaners help reduce toxic chemical impact on the surroundings. Another problem area which affects both tourist resorts, as well as Thailand’s potable water systems, is grease from restaurant and food factories. When these businesses use InnuScience Nu-Super Trap, they can safely degrade and digest their grease wastes right at sites, and prevent environmental and health problems that result when these wastes enter our rivers and oceans.
InnuScience is super-concentrated and has dilution rates up to 1:600. That means a low cost in use, but also fewer transportation costs and storage space requirements. Reducing toxic chemicals in your home or workplace supports a healthy environment and may even lead to reduced employee sick time and medical claims. And any reduction in the use of toxic chemicals has a positive effect on our global environment.
And don’t forget, chemical cleaners often damage the very surfaces that they are being used to clean. In fact, it is the high and low pH formulations that enable chemical cleaning, but which also damage infrastructure and are health risks. InnuScience products are pH neutral (7.0) and hence cannot harm people or the surfaces being cleaned.
InnuScience products are certified by three international environmental organizations – EcoLogo, EcoLabel and Nordic Ecolabel – assuring complete environmental and human safety.
InnuScience biotechnology cleaning offers low cost in use, effective residual cleaning, superior human and environmental safety and a complete range of product options. Now is the time to switch and clean your home and business-like nature cleans. It’s the better way! And it’s made in Canada!
Tom Grimm, President of Green Footprint Solutions, Ltd, has 30 years of experience marketing and applying environmentally sustainable technologies in the hospitality and commercial industries. Originally from New York, he has been based in Bangkok since 2013.
Green Footprint Solutions is the authorized importer for InnuScience products in Thailand and ASEAN. Companies interested in representing these unique products, or in partnering with Green Footprint, can contact us at 0-2102-4564 or [email protected] We are seeking resellers in various geographic areas and market segments.
(1) From the Biomimicy.org website.
(2) “Make Bacteria Work for Us”, Waterfront, May 2015, Lindstrom, Ahlander & Nordin.
(3) “The Environmental Impact of Cleaning Products”, Facilities Net, May 2009, Ashkin.
(4) Definition from Wikipedia.
(5) “Reduction of the Microbiological Load on Hospital Surfaces Through Probiotic-Based Cleaning Procedures: A New Strategy to Control Nosocomial Infections”, Journal of Microbiology & Experimentation, Vol 1, issue 5, 2014.