In the light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring that surfaces are clean and hygienic has become a major issue. Concerns about surfaces, whether in packaging, textiles, industrial or medical applications, and their role in transmitting viruses have led to a huge growth in the demand for antiviral solutions.
Sukano had already developed an antiviral masterbatch that, says the company, has been designed to meet this demand by protecting surfaces from acting as virus transmitters. The effectiveness of the product was tested and confirmed last year against Feline Coronavirus and Influenza H1N1. This year, the antiviral effect against SARS-Cov-2 was also tested by a specialised microbiological external laboratory on PET, PA, PP - and PLA fabric surfaces. The tests included PLA, as biopolymers have become increasingly relevant, playing a decisive role in packaging applications as well as in the medical arena. This led Sukano to add an antiviral masterbatch for PLA applications to its portfolio.
The results showed a 99.98% inactivation of the SARS-Cov-2 virus within 2 hours. The activity of the Influenza H1N1 virus was reduced by 99.99% on a coex film after 30 minutes.
“We tested against both SARS-Cov-2 and Influenza H1N1, according to ISO 18184:2019 and ISO 21702:2019,” said Michael Kirch, Global Head of R&D for Sukano. “We are delighted with the outcome of the tests and we now have confirmation on the deactivation of the viruses, giving customers additional trust and confidence while using our high-performance additive masterbatch in their application.”
The masterbatches work by directly integrating an antiviral additive into the polymer, using proprietary formulation and technology. This then functions as a robust and scientifically proven safety layer that helps prevent viral transmission through product surfaces and remains present and effective throughout the life of the product. The additive is consistently active on the surface of the product, without being released into the environment.
The active ingredient used in Sukano’s antiviral masterbatches is a registered preservative in the EU, Switzerland and USA. However, to claim antiviral effect and promote this in the final product, producers using the products are required to test the final product, have the results confirmed by a specialised external laboratory, and to comply with local legal regulations.