Amid COVID-19, paper producers rush to produce antimicrobial products

Francisco Castro

Francisco Castro

September 28, 2020 () –

Studies show the coronavirus leaves tissue paper and printing paper after three hours, and the virus is undetectable from inside a book after 24 hours. Still, many have become wary of touching shared surfaces.

So, paper producers have rushed to develop paper products with antibacterial properties, hoping to assuage some of these worries, especially in medical and restaurant settings.

‘Silver Bullet’

American Eagle Paper Mills initially launched antimicrobial copy paper suited for use in medical, restaurant, food service sites, schools and offices. The company says the Eagle Armour range is treated with Biomaster silver ion technology that inhibits bacteria growth for the lifetime of the paper.

The company later expanded the portfolio to include office, envelope, offset paper. And more importantly, the additive protecting against micro-organisms does not affect the look, feel, shade or paper performance, the company notes.

UK-based James Cropper is also pitching its own “silver bullet” against coronavirus.

The company says tests show its PaperGard silver ion treatment combined with Addmaster’s Biomaster antimicrobial solution reduces COVID-19 contamination. The silver ions reportedly bind to the cell wall of the micro-organism, interrupting enzyme production in addition to preventing cell formation and growth. PaperGard does not allow the micro-organisms to develop any resistance.

The PaperGard treatment is suitable for medical, healthcare documents, papers and boards for premium packaging, as well as greeting cards.

Wisconsin-based Appvion recently released its SafeShield antimicrobial coating technology for a variety of substrates. The company says lab tests demonstrate that its use prevents the replication of DNA and new cell formation, providing up to 99.99% reduction in non-pathogen bacteria on paper’s surface, even after printing and post processing.

And most recently, Nippon Paper jumped into the fray with its own product, which it expects to be a big seller amid the pandemic.

The Japanese company introduced antimicrobial printing paper for menus and hospital records containing copper ions, which it says carries 99% fewer viruses than regular paper.

As an added bonus, the paper is also odor-resistant.

We will soon find out whether antibacterial paper will offer a sense of security in a world left uncertain by a pandemic that is still raging and impacting people’s way of life around the globe.

Francisco Castro is the Paper, Hygiene Products & Publishing editor for Industry Intelligence, which can help YOU better address your own industry challenges. To arm yourself with the latest market intelligence, contact Ask us about our interactive intelligence map and search bot on Microsoft Teams.

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