Four Things You Need To Know About No-Touch Disinfection

As we’ve always known, schools are where most students need to be, and they are now reopening while we’re still in the grips of the Covid-19 pandemic. Furthermore, we will also be entering another annual cold and flu season with its attendant absenteeism and other adverse health impacts. It’s enough to make anyone responsible for providing and maintaining healthy environments lose some sleep!

Disinfecting all of the critical high-touch objects in our buildings is a challenge for any housekeeping program at the best of times, even more so during periods of increased illness rates and outbreaks. However, we believe that an established technology known as No-Touch Disinfection (NTD) can help solve this problem. 

Through the use of electrostatic spray devices, NTD augments your current daily cleaning and disinfection practices, allowing you to ensure complete disinfectant coverage of all high touch surfaces economically and efficiently.  As you are probably aware, this approach is now being used to provide enhanced disinfection for everything from nursing homes to passenger planes to schools.

Implementing NTD can be easy once the facility’s requirements are appropriately matched to the correct application technology and disinfectant chemistry.  Once the technology is selected, education and training enable the safe deployment of NTD.

Here are some guidelines when evaluating NTD:

What is electrostatic spray application?

During periods of heightened threats of infection or actual outbreaks, you need to be able to ensure 100% coverage of all frequently touched surfaces and objects. Imperial Dade offers electrostatic and spray disinfection systems that can meet everyone’s budget and application requirements.  These units impart an electrostatic charge to the disinfectant to achieve 360 degree surface coverage. As a result, large areas can be effectively and efficiently treated economically.

Handheld Victory Electrostatic Sprayer

What needs to be considered when instituting a NTD program?

In an educational setting, the disinfectant needs to be matched to the organisms of most concern, be it the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus which causes the infection known as Covid-19, Influenza, Norovirus, MRSA, or any number of other bacteria, viruses, or fungi. Then, is it necessary to treat the high-touch objects on a weekly or more frequent schedule?  Also, will the areas to be treated be adjacent to occupied spaces?  Can corded equipment be used in the desired regions, or is there a need for battery-powered devices for portability?

Which disinfectants can be applied electrostatically?

Most importantly, the disinfectant chemistry for NTD needs to be compatible with this type of application equipment.  Is the disinfectant product approved or authorized for this application method, with electrostatic spray, mist, or fog?  What is the label dwell time requirements and the efficacy against the microorganisms of concern?  Regarding SARS-CoV-2, is the disinfectant on the EPA List N of products approved for use against the coronavirus?  Fortunately, according to the EPA website, products on List N are effective against all strains of SARS-CoV-2 as genetic changes to the virus do not impact the efficacy of disinfectants.  Finally, regarding your staff, what is the safety profile of the product and the recommended Personal Protective Equipment?

What types of NTD devices and disinfectants are available?

There are several manufacturers of NTD devices and chemistries that are available.  Many customers have found success with the corded Clorox Total 360 systems. However, many others prefer the ease and portability of the Victory Innovations line of battery-powered electrostatic sprayers.  Furthermore, the Victory units are designed to use a wide range of disinfectants, including peroxide and chlorinated tablets, so the chemistry can be tailored to meet the individual educational facility’s budget and infection prevention needs.

Clorox Total 360 System

Your Imperial Dade sales consultant has the resources, knowledge, and expertise to make the correct product recommendation for your specific needs.  Don’t hesitate to contact a branch near you to learn more about how No-Touch Disinfection can benefit your school.

Improve Your Cleaning Program Results With Resources from Imperial Dade

Maintaining an efficient cleaning process is vital for any business but improving that process and garnering better results are equally important. As a customer of Imperial Dade, numerous programs and resources are at your disposal to ensure that a healthy environment for your staff and customers is provided.

Imperial Dade’s HyProtection Zone Program: Hand Hygiene and High-Touch Surface Disinfection

This program provided by Imperial Dade is ideal for educational facilities, restaurants, fitness centers, office buildings, retail stores, hotels, and houses of worship. This program assists customers in improving their hand hygiene, cleaning, and high-touch surface disinfection protocols. By participating in this program, consumers will benefit from site surveys where critical touchpoints will be identified, product reviews that ensure that the right products are being used on each surface, and an in-depth explanation of the best practices. For even easier accessibility, onsite or virtual HyProtection Zone training is available through the Imperial Dade Cleaning Institute. The training will be conducted by experienced consultants who will guide you through the process and provide informed recommendations to guarantee a healthy and clean environment that prevents the spread of illnesses.

Imperial Dade’s EatSafe Program: For a Clean Dining Environment

The EatSafe Program assists restaurants and other foodservice establishments in providing a safe and welcoming environment for their customers. The program contains core product recommendations for every individual area in your facility, help for visual learners such as wall charts for cleaning tasks, and assets that can be used to promote the EatSafe program to your guests. In addition, the increased sanitation performance helps present an establishment that is hygienic and clean. The three core areas are front-of-house touchpoints such as table-tops, chairs, and menus, restroom fixtures like faucets, flushers, dispensers, door handles, and floors, including hard surfaces and carpeting and matting.

Imperial Dade’s Environmental Service Program: Victoria Bay Equipment and Chemicals

This program is customizable to each customer’s needs. Offered are dish and laundry equipment, chemicals, and dispensers. All of which are backed by 24/7 emergency technical service. Whether it’s warewashing, tackling everyday kitchen cleaning challenges, following proper 3-compartment sink procedures, or utilizing Victoria Bay’s chemical management system, this Imperial Dade program can maximize efficiencies and effectiveness.

Imperial Dade’s Cleaning Institute: Delivering Cleaner, Healthier Facility Solutions

Imperial Dade offers exceptional training to customers on a variety of topics ranging from general cleaning to floor care. Our Director of Training teams with our sales staff to make specific labor-saving recommendations. A computer-aided task analysis system identifies opportunities for a company and then suggests relevant training to accomplish the tasks at hand. The benefits of this program include improved safety, enhanced wellness, increased productivity, and reduced overall costs.

Imperial Dade offers highly effective consultative programs to better customers’ processes and help them maintain peak performance in areas of cleanliness. Visit https://imperialdade.com/Locations and contact a location near you.

Can’t Touch This: The Benefits of a Touch-Free Restroom for Your Business

As the world continues adapting to the ever-changing COVID-19 environment, the importance of maintaining clean and sanitized facilities has become paramount to offices, schools, restaurants, and all other commercial buildings. Customers are more likely to be loyal to businesses that have enacted additional precautions for the safety of their clientele. One way companies have adapted to this new environment is through the utilization of touch-free restrooms.

The popularity of touch-free or contact-free lavatories was already on the rise prior to the pandemic. Yet, as scientists continue to discover how transmissible the disease is, the importance of touch-free restrooms has become abundantly clear to large and small businesses alike.

The Victoria Bay Restroom Collection is a complete dispenser and refill solution.

Here we will discuss some of the advantages of having a touch-free restroom for your business:

Increased Cleanliness and Improved Sanitation

The first and most obvious benefit to having a touch-free restroom is the reduction in the number of germs that customers are exposed to. Touch-free toilets, sinks, soap dispensers, and paper towel dispensers reduce the likelihood of customer contamination due to physical contact.

High-touch areas often spread germs more easily between employees and customers. By removing the need to physically touch these appliances, you will mitigate the potential for employee illnesses due to viral and bacterial exposure and increase client confidence in your business’s sanitation policies. In fact, three in five Americans agree that utilizing automatic paper towel dispensers in public restrooms would improve their perception of the business’s cleanliness, according to a survey conducted by Sofidel.

Streamlined Amenities for Customer Convenience

Touching various surfaces like faucets, paper towel dispensers, and soap dispensers can be cumbersome to some of your customers. If someone is using their smartphone or carrying a handbag or briefcase, the added convenience of simply putting your hand in front of a sensor saves time and effort. In addition, touch-free restroom fixtures increase accessibility for customers suffering from mobility issues and have difficulty manipulating handles and knobs.

Reduction in Water Usage and Waste

Touch-free restrooms also reduce water consumption and waste products. By utilizing sensor-controlled faucets, water is only being used while a customer or employee is actively washing their hands. Over time, the elimination of unnecessary water use can add up to significant savings on water usage, which is both good for the environment and your bottom line.

Touch-free soap and paper towel dispensers can also save you money by reducing product usage from customers and employees. With the ability to individualize soap and paper allotments, you can minimize soap and towel waste. As every business owner knows, resource management, even on a small scale, is critical to the company’s long-term success.

Enhanced Reliability and Long-Term Viability

Both customers and employees can be demanding when it comes to bathroom amenities. From kicking toilet handles to pushing against faucets and soap dispensers, your restroom can sustain a lot of damage during use. Incorporating touch-free features can help reduce the likelihood of a client or employee being too rough with your restroom fixtures. This will improve the reliability and lifespan of all elements in your restrooms.

Imperial Dade: Your Source for High-Quality Touchless Restroom Solutions

Imperial Dade is a leading supplier of facility maintenance supplies and equipment for large and small businesses. We offer a wide range of products, including the Victoria Bay restroom dispenser collection, to help upgrade your existing conventional restroom into a touch-free environment. From touch-free soap dispensers to automated in-stall air freshener dispensers for your existing toilets, Imperial Dade is your only source for high-quality touch-free products at an affordable price.

For more information about Imperial Dade and how we can transform your business, contact us today!

Robotic Floor Care: A Reliable Investment in Commercial Cleaning Solutions

Automation takes a lot of forms — robotic floor care is one of them!

Advancements in commercial equipment have paved the way for intelligent cleaning solutions, making robotic vacuum cleaners a sound investment for businesses both large and small.

Many business owners or operation managers interested in maintaining high cleaning standards without increasing labor costs have adopted automated floor care as the leading solution. This next-generation technology is the perfect companion to any janitorial team because it maximizes cleaning efficiency without breaking the budget. Considering the cleaning industry is often understaffed, whether due to labor shortage or high employee turnover, assigning this mundane task to a machine allows your work personnel to focus on more important cleaning tasks, such as sanitation and disinfection.

Moreover, robotic floor scrubbers can effectively improve commercial cleaning processes. Manual cleaning routines are prone to human error and can miss as much as 15 percent of an area, whereas automated floor care delivers 98 percent to 99.5 percent cleaning coverage. Certain models are designed to automatically calculate the best cleaning path, while others can be manually programmed and reprogrammed for your peace of mind. Once upon a time, this required the help of an experienced engineer, but technological advancements allow on-site managers to handle this on their own!

A great advantage of owning a commercial robotic scrubber (besides having a team member who never calls in sick) is that it requires minimal supervision. Once programmed, the Liberty SC50 from our partners at Nilfisk, for example, can operate up to six hours on a single charge without human guidance. Once the work has been finished, or assistance is required, the machine can automatically contact the manager.

Although robotic scrubbers have a higher up-front cost, they pay for themselves in a short period of time and can last up to 10 years with proper care. Facilities that are cleaned every day or more frequently will have a payback period of 14 to 24 months. It is estimated that labor makes up 90 percent of facility maintenance costs, which can rise even further for buildings that need to be cleaned more frequently. By adopting automated floor care solutions, businesses can save a lot of money in the long run and allocate that budget to other projects.

This is also a fantastic way to improve sustainability efforts. State-of-the-art robotic scrubbers are designed to be incredibly efficient and minimize the use of energy, water, and cleaning chemicals.

Both employees and customers value a business that prioritizes cleanliness for the public’s health and safety, especially in the COVID-19 era. A survey conducted by The Harris Poll shows that poor cleanliness would lead a staggering 99 percent of Americans to develop a negative perception of the business. The current pandemic has only exacerbated our need for clean commercial sites.

Businesses from a wide range of industries can benefit from automated floor care:

  • Convention centers
  • Retail shopping stores
  • Educational facilities
  • Office buildings
  • Hospitals
  • Airports
  • And more!

Are you interested in expanding your janitorial team with a robotic scrubber? Take a look at this infographic to decide whether automated floor care is right for you.

Working with an experienced distributor who can consult on the cleaning equipment options, perform demonstrations, and provide onsite training is essential to selecting the best machines and ensuring ROI.

Imperial Dade has a long history of helping clients discover innovative solutions to improve their commercial cleaning practices. We would love to do the same for you! Contact us today to learn more about automated floor cleaning, and, as always, check our COVID-19 guide to ensure your business is a safe and healthy environment for employees and guests alike.

The Hygienic Benefits of Paper Towels Over Hand Dryers in Commercial Restrooms

The secret war between paper towels and hand dryers needs to end in the COVID-19 era. The “health and wellness first” mindset that so many people have developed in the last year has everyone wondering: which product promotes superior hand drying that is both healthy and effective?

The answer may not surprise you if you have followed the news over the years.

You may recall a breakout news story that went viral in the early months of 2018, exhibiting the effects of a Petri dish left to incubate inside of a hand dryer for 48 hours. The student who performed the science experiment shared the photo of the unsightly bacterial colonies that had grown inside the Petri dish on her Facebook page, and the rest is history. The post was shared by 500,000+ people in just a matter of days and covered by local and national news channels and newspapers. This sparked a debate in the scientific community about whether hand dryers were as hygienic as their manufacturers claimed.

Although the news story received national coverage a few years ago, the implications of the experiment’s results have an even bigger impact now that we’re living through a pandemic.

Now more than ever, people everywhere are trying to limit their interaction with harmful germs and bacteria by wearing masks, constantly washing and sanitizing their hands, maintaining social distance guidelines, etc. So, let’s put an end to this debate once and for all. Are hand dryers unhygienic?

The simple answer is yes.

Numerous studies have shown that hand dryers contaminate the surrounding environment by dispersing harmful bacteria and pathogens in the air. The Journal of Applied Microbiology released a study that compared paper towels to warm air dryers and jet air dryers. The results showed that jet air dryers released 1,300 times more bacteria than hand towels. Another study conducted by Tork, an Essity brand, echoed similar results — jet air dryers spread 10 times more germs. A GP Pro infographic found here states that 70 percent of germs released by jet air dryers have a radius of at least four feet. Kimberly-Clark Professional also released an in-depth resource that compares jet air dryers and paper towels on quite a few different factors.

Let’s not forget that in today’s world, it’s better to be safe than sorry. The same study from Tork found that 80 percent of consumers don’t feel safe using unhygienic bathrooms in a COVID-19 world.

The best way to build trust with your customers is to make the switch to paper towels and touch-free towel dispensers. Take a look at these benefits that paper towels offer over hand dryers.

Imperial Dade carries a wide variety of paper towels and dispensers from the leading brands including Victoria Bay. Contact a location near you and request a consultation. View our COVID-19 resources for more tips on creating a healthy environment for all employees and guests at your place of business.

Industry Experts Share Their Cost Saving Tips, Part 3 of 3

Jan/San Supplies & Equipment

Tips from Mitch Irvine, VP of Sales, National Accounts – Imperial Dade

  1. Buy concentrated chemicals which provide significant cost savings and reduce the need for chemical storage space. Our EDS (Easy Dilution System) or CMS (Chemical Management System) allow for super-concentrated formulas to be mixed by a wall-mounted dispensing system and the final product is only 10% of the RTU (Ready to Use) equivalent.
  2. Utilize our Imperial Dade Cleaning Institute to train and educate your cleaning crew. Properly trained employees work more efficiently and more safely.
  3. Invest in maintaining your floor cleaning equipment. Well maintained equipment avoids costly unexpected breakdowns which halt productivity.
  4. Reduce labor costs by implementing robotic cleaning equipment into your operations. Autonomous floor cleaning can save as much as 4 hours a day compared to manual machines, delivering an excellent ROI.
  5. Purchase matting rather than renting. Your establishment can own a custom-printed mat for the cost of about 10 weeks of rental fees. Use an outdoor scraper mat for the initial tough soils and then an olefin mat on the inside to capture the final debris. It can cost up to $500 to remove one pound of soil from a building.  Matting is the first defense to reduce indoor floor soil.

Our experienced Chemical Managers and Floor Care Specialists are available to help you reduce costs and improve safety and cleanliness in your facility. Contact an Imperial Dade location near you to get started!

Industry Experts Share Their Cost Saving Tips, Part 2 of 3

Foodservice Supplies

Tips from Andrew Paton, Regional Sales Director – Imperial Dade

  1. Invest in takeout packaging. Save money on leftover packaging. Instead of buying a “middle of the road” vessel for both leftovers and takeout, use an inexpensive package like a paper food pail for customers’ leftovers and utilize a high-end package like a Cube container for takeout and delivery.
  2. In coastal and high-tourism areas, timeshares and vacation rentals are common.  Restaurants can create a takeout container or takeout cup that is dishwasher safe and will end up being reused in the kitchens of these rentals.  Some examples are souvenir cups and dishwasher-safe takeout containers.  Branding a cup or container with your logo and contact information is a great way to market to visitors that stay in these rentals. 
  3. Garbage bags and can liners are often misused. Take a look at the garbage bag in your trash can. If there is more than 6 inches of bag hanging off the side, you should be using a shorter, and less expensive, can liner. Try our Accufit liners.  Each size of liner is designed to specifically fit the corresponding trash can.
  4. The most common dispenser roll towel in the market is a 350ft roll.  The Victoria Bay high capacity roll towel is 1150ft.  That’s over three times the amount of paper on the roll. By using a high capacity roll, your staff will change out the towels less often and the cost in use is significantly less.
  5. Handled paper bags are the most common takeout bags in the market due to customer preferences.  A great option is a die-cut handle paper bag.  These bags are less expensive than traditional rolled paper handled bags yet have the same useful features and benefits. 
Custom-printed souvenir cups are a cost-effective marketing tool.

Our experienced consultants are available to help you streamline operations, save money, and improve customer satisfaction. Contact an Imperial Dade location near you to get started!

Industry Experts Share Their Cost Saving Tips, Part 1 of 3

Industrial Packaging

Tips from Richard Clarke Jr., Director – Industrial Packaging Division

  1. Use pre-stretched stretch wrap which provides the same holding power as traditional stretch wrap for about one third of the cost.
  2. Use 15” wide stretch wrap rather than 18” wide wrap. Most workers overwrap excessively with 18” when 15” does the same job for 10-15% less in cost.
  3. For consistently sized skids, consider a relatively inexpensive semi-automatic stretch wrapper. The operator can drop the skid, tie a corner, punch a button, and go. This improves efficiency by 200%.
  4. Use banding film (narrow rolls of stretch wrap) for small or light jobs to save money.
  5. Use corrugated paper rolls to protect furniture and other valuables instead of bubble wrap. This product works just as well and is much less expensive.

For more information about Imperial Dade’s Industrial Packaging Division, download our brochure and contact Richard Clarke Jr. at rsc.jr@imperialdade.com.

Safety in School Nutrition Programs

Despite different backgrounds, life experiences and age, a common educational experience exists – school foodservice. Whether a student eats in the lunchroom, classroom or simply stops by a grab-and-go kiosk, safety for students is top of mind this fall.

Changing to distance or hybrid learning has changed the way schools provide meals to students, too. Depending on state-by-state regulations, many schools across the nation have not fully returned to in-person instruction. Some schools are providing both to-go bag lunches for home and meals for classrooms. While there are many variables to how schools are managing this, one thing is for sure: School lunches are very important for many students.

Each day, 30 million students are served by the National School Lunch Program, many of whom rely on this offering as a means for nutritious, healthy food.

Automated Labeling for School Meal Programs

This year it is much harder to maintain safety standards with a traditional lunchroom format of service. Schools have adapted by mobilizing staff to bring lunches to classrooms or team up with bus drivers on their routes to deliver to students at home. This delivery style lunch continues coverage, but also increases the importance of proper labeling. Allergies, dietary restrictions and nutrition regulations must continue to be considered – printing these crucial pieces of information clearly on labels makes assessment easy and ensures a safe meal for every student.

Utilizing Clear Labeling for Prep & Food Packaging

Operators are also still focused on serving healthy student meals while taking food allergies and sensitivities into consideration. Changing dietary needs and regulations, compounded with allergies, means school foodservice operators are hypersensitive when it comes to protecting students. The DateCodeGenie® system prints labels for grab-and-go, prep, allergens and more at the touch of a button – and can be customized for your school’s unique needs. Meals can even be individually labeled with student names to ensure safety and prevent mix-ups. Plus, this intuitive system can be controlled from a centralized district or campus location to streamline and save time. Labeling becomes easy, safe and efficient so that you can focus on keeping students safe.

With the Date Code Genie®, school foodservice operators can:
  • Quick-print labels for frequently prepped items
  • Label entire meals or individual portions made for grab-and-go
  • Easily customize labels with school logo, branding and even student names
  • Display ingredients, allergens & nutrition information clearly on labels
  • Control multiple district schools in one place

Multiple label adhesives are available, including a tamper-evident style that assures delivered meals have not been compromised. Date Code Genie systems provide benefits to school foodservice operations both immediately and well into the future.

Visit our website and speak with your Imperial Dade representative about purchasing a Date Code Genie for your school or other foodservice operation.

8 Not-So-Scary Advantages of Ghost Kitchens

This may be the ideal time to open a new food concept!

By Laura Craven

Imagine you’ve always dreamed of opening a restaurant but the massive investment in the physical location, equipment, furniture, décor, labor, etc. was prohibitive. And, the time needed to build or remodel the space, develop the menu, train staff, pass inspections, and create a marketing campaign could take several months or even a year.

What if you could rent a turnkey commercial kitchen space for 10% or less of the initial cost to rent a traditional restaurant and hit the ground running within a matter of weeks? Impossible you say? Not if you use a ghost kitchen.

What is a ghost kitchen? Also known as “cloud”, “dark”, “delivery”, or “virtual”, ghost kitchens operate without the traditional front-of-house dining room and customer-facing store front. These shared foodservice hubs have been around for several years, arriving on the scene as delivery orders grew in popularity. Today, with dining rooms closed or restricted and more consumers adopting delivered meals, commercial kitchens designed for off-premise sales could be the answer for restauranteurs, both experienced and inspired newcomers.

The advantages of using ghost kitchens, in addition to the fractional rent, may include:

  • Strategically located in areas near many hungry customers
  • Parking and check-in stations for delivery drivers
  • Tech enabled facilities to support online ordering and status communications
  • Co-op purchasing opportunities
  • Marketing partnerships with third-party delivery services
  • Cleaning/sanitation services and HACCP support
  • Flexible leasing arrangements
  • Ability to change concepts with the seasons

A successful “virtual restaurant” still requires great food, hard work, and the ability to stand out in a crowded marketplace, but the barrier to entry is much lower.

Tips for a delivery-only model:

  • Streamline your menu for speed and off-premise quality
  • Offer unique menu items tailored for the demographics in your delivery area
  • Use the right technology application and data analytics for your business model
  • Price your offerings with applicable expenses in mind such as delivery fees
  • Use high-quality packaging to preserve temperature, texture, and appearance
  • Use tamper-evident bags and wrapped cutlery/napkin kits to ensure safety
Download the Off-Premise Packaging Guide

Today’s convenience-culture consumers are willing to pay more for having restaurant-quality food delivered. If you are interested in making your dream a reality, visit www.thekitchendoor.com for a list of ghost kitchens in your area. For a complimentary consultation on off-premise packaging, contact the experts at Imperial Dade. Visit www.ImperialDade.com for a location near you.