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Growth of Antimicrobial Plastics

According to a recently released report from MarketsandMarkets.com, the global antimicrobial plastics market is projected to reach approximately US$3.6 billion by 2020 and register a CAGR of 10% between 2015 and 2020 in terms of value. Antimicrobial plastics are those resins that are infused with antimicrobial agents to reduce or mitigate the growth of micro-organisms such as algae, bacteria, and fungi on plastic products, particularly those used in public settings such as hospitals, restrooms, and other places where germs are of concern.The U.S. is currently the largest antimicrobial plastics

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Think About Pool and Spa Applications

Plastics used in pool and spa applications need to have a number of material attributes to withstand that environment, including good impact strength, chemical resistance to bromine and chlorine, and good UV performance. Pool and spa components are made almost entirely of plastics including the pump housings and interior gear parts; lighting housings, in-floor pool cleaning pop-ups, system filtration parts and the pipes from which the plumbing is constructed. Materials typically used are PVC and very high-strength poly-carbonate/polyester alloys to provide longevity for pool/spa systems tha

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Antimicrobial Additives in Plastics Stop Germs Before They Start

Some bacteria that have become resistant to antibiotics are of great concern to hospitals and have migrated out into public places – manufacturers are looking for ways to put a stop to these microbes before they start.  Another source of great concern for microbial growth is the food processing industry. While the largest market share for antimicrobials is the food and beverage industry, the healthcare industry not far behind. Because plastics have become ubiquitous in both of those industries, the plastics industry has been extremely proactive in developing ways to incorporate micr

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Silver v. Zinc Antimicrobials

Zinc antimicrobials are especially useful in areas subject to high humidity. When it comes to antimicrobial additives for plastics, there is more than one choice. While silver tends to be more versatile and efficacious than alternatives such as zinc, zinc oxide is making its mark in the antimicrobial arena. Both silver and zinc oxide (ZnO) are well known for their antimicrobial and healing properties, yet silver remains the most widely used additive for killing bacteria particularly on medical device surfaces. However, studies done in recent years have shown that ZnO nanoparticles added

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Food-contact surfaces and the EPA/FDA tug of war

When is a pesticide a pesticide? And when is a pesticide NOT a pesticide? When does an antimicrobial additive in plastic products used in food-contact surfaces become a “pesticide chemical?” These are just a few issues that the EPA and the FDA have been trying to sort out for quite some time. Fortunately for the plastics industry, the federal government tackled the issue and sought to clarify the antimicrobial oversight confusion that reared its ugly head with the Food Quality Protection Act of 1996 (FQPA) with the Antimicrobial Regulation Technical Corrections Act of 1998 (ARTCA). That

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Antimicrobials are big business in the USA

It seems that consumers are more concerned than ever about bacterial infections, particularly those that are antibiotic resistant. Antimicrobial products are big business in the USA. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), approximately one billion dollars each year are spent on a variety of antimicrobial products. More than 5,000 antimicrobial products are currently registered with the EPA and sold in the marketplace, according to a recent report.Nearly 60 percent of antimicrobial products are registered to control infectious microorganisms in hospitals and other health c

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Composites are particularly susceptible to microbes

Did you ever wonder why some of your outdoor plastic furniture – especially white or the lighter colors – gets dark gray or greenish stains on it that won’t wipe off? Well, that’s because the stains are caused by plastics’ susceptibility to bacteria, fungi and algae. It is a problem that gets worse during the summer months when the humidity is high and temperatures are warm, something that these microbes love and that causes them to thrive.PVC – particularly flexible PVC – which many of your outdoor furniture products are made from, is especially susceptible to attack from these

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Fighting microbes is a full-time job

Finding and identifying microbes was just phase one. Once these microbes, which are responsible for many infectious diseases that continue to plague mankind, were discovered the next phase was to create methods of neutralizing these insidious ‘germs.’ Thus came the development of penicillin and other anti-bacterial agents (antibiotics) to help us win the fight against microbes and the diseases they caused.Over the 20th Century, it was also discovered that these microbes – which had survived for thousands of years – had the ability to shape-shift and become resistant to many of what wer

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Antimicrobial additives for resins make good sense

The development of antimicrobial additives for plastics resins is in response to innovative ways to proactively inhibit microbial growth on surfaces of many plastic products that consumers – both public and institutional – are demanding to prevent the spread of bacteria.  In particular, the antibiotic resistant “super bugs” that are not only in hospital settings but are now out in the general population, are of grave concern spurring advances in resin-compatible antimicrobial technology.In fact, according to a report from The Freedonia Group,* a Cleveland-based industry research firm,

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Don’t let microbes set up shop in your plastics

Antimicrobial additive technology for plastics has been around for more than a decade. These additives, which can be either organic or inorganic in nature, can be dispersed in plastic materials to prevent bacterial colonies from taking hold in products used in environments conducive to colony growth. These include marine environments; other moist, warm environments; hospital environments, construction applications such as Wood Plastic Composites (WPCs) using in decking and railing, and more.Antimicrobial additives are suitable for a variety of applications such as high-traffic public contact

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Antimicrobials for polymers increase cleanliness

Whether you are healthcare professional using plastic medical devices, or you have appliances in your home, everyone wants to try to keep plastic clean. To reduce stains, odors, or deterioration, custom-formulated antimicrobials for polymers have been created.Microbes are too small to be seen with the naked eye. Once the microbes have multiplied, only then can they be detected without a microscope. To affect the growth of bacteria, silver ions can be dispersed throughout the polymer matrix. The silver ions inhibit the growth of bacteria without disappearing themselves. Therefore the silver ion

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