Hygienic textiles in the hospitality sector are safeguarded by a European standard

Bildquelle: Alsco

BERLIN, 09.06.2020 - Not just since Covid-19 guests expect a reliable standard of hygiene when visiting restaurants or hotels. This of course also applies to all the different textiles that are being used – napkins, tablecloth, bed linen and towels, to name just a few. Since its introduction in 2002 the European standard EN 14065 describes a Risk Analysis Biocontamination Control (RABC) system that aims to process textiles from hygiene-sensitive areas and facilities safely and to agreed microbiological qualities.

Apart from health care, food and medical industries the standard is also relevant for the hospitality sector. The standard enabled SMEs in the laundry sector to systematically identify potential contamination risks. And to turn them into process quality opportunities. By that the applied management system helped to reduce operating costs through effective, targeted hygiene measures and customers profit from a certified hygiene level.

The norm is based on the idea to not only control the quality of the finished product, but to rather establish a comprehensive preventive system of measures. It is not only the textiles themselves that are subject to hygienic regulations. To achieve the necessary microbiological quality, not only the production environment in the laundry must be low in “bugs” to safeguard the textiles. Hygiene measures (e.g. hand disinfection) are also laid down in special hygiene plans for the laundry staff.

The standard has proven to be very successful and was quickly adopted across Europe for the laundering of textiles in different business sectors. Not only because it does not define specific levels of hygiene but rather for providing a comprehensive method toolbox to achieve hygienic quality. It leaves a high degree of freedom to individual laundries as rules by specific member states, related to hygiene and bio-contamination, can be easily referred to. A European wide consultation between stakeholders regarding a 5-year term revision of the standard is currently under way, but no substantial changes are being expected. SBS experts are closely monitoring discussions and outcome.