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ME customers prefer hand towels to dryers

Dubai, April 8, 2013

UAE-based Dhofar Global Trading, a washrooms’ solutions company, said around 98 per cent of its business is generated by sales of paper towels, versus 2 per cent of hand dryers, with ME customers opting for towels when given a choice.

With technological advances constantly being made in washroom hand dryers, many people would be forgiven for thinking that hand dryers are the preferred washroom option, however a recent study of all surveys over the past 40 years has thrown up some interesting statistics, a statement from Dhofar said.

In June 2012, the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota in the US published a comprehensive study of every known hand-washing survey conducted since 1970 with authors concluding that – from a hygiene perspective - paper towels were superior to driers.

Total annual paper and tissue consumption in the Middle East will cross 38 million tonnes by 2020, versus just 18 million tonnes in 2010, driven by strong economic prospects, rising standards of living, increasing numbers of international events and service industry growth, according to the organisers of Paper Arabia 2012.

Chandan Singh, deputy general manager, Dhofar Global Trading, said: “Religious and cultural norms in the near and Middle East put usage of facial tissue products amongst the highest consumed category in the world, and we also see huge potential in the toweling sector, which covers kitchen rolls, industrial towels and wipes, as well as napkins and paper towels.”

“A sector where Dhofar is focusing its strategic efforts, is the away-from-home (AFH) – or institutional – tissue paper market segment, which includes auto-cut tissue, industrial rolls, facial tissues and other products,” he added. “The AFH segment is most developed in North America, where it accounts for 38 per cent of tissue consumption, but GCC market usage has increased exponentially in the last four years - by up to 40 per cent.”

Tests conducted by a team of scientists at the University of Westminster, established that the potential for cross-contamination of other washroom users as a result of using jet air dryers, which expel air at speeds of up to 400 mph, was significant, with micro-organisms blown up to two metres away.

A 2005 study by TÜV Product and Umwelt showed that the bacterial count on people’s hands after using paper towels decreased by 24 per cent, whereas it was a completely different picture for hot-air dryer users whose bacteria levels increased by 117 per cent after drying.

Dhofar is also addressing sustainability issues with its product line, as hand dryers remain market leader when it comes to environmental impact, the statement said.

The company has its own range of award-winning state-of-the-art organic tissue paper dispensers, which are modified to dispense a single sheet of pre-perforated tissue, which is commonly used across the region from hotel kitchens and offices to mall restrooms and cleaning companies.

“We have continued with our commitment to product innovation and have helped our clients cut back on their paper consumption by 22 per cent last year, which not only means cost savings for businesses but reduces the environmental impact during the manufacturing process,” Singh concluded. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: UAE | Dubai | Paper towels |

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