Contact us on +022 2419 3000 or indiantextilejournal.com.

Viruses can remain infective on textile surfaces for days

Sep 01, 2020
Viruses can remain infective on textile surfaces for days

The journey began in October 1996 when Raymond entered the denim world with an Italian collaboration to cater to rising demand of speciality denim worldwide. The company from the begining has been strategically focused on top-quality, innovative, value-added denim fabrics. This has made Raymond a major denim player in the sub-continent.

In 2006, Raymond entered into a joint venture with UCO NV of Belgium. This merger gave global presence to domestic expertise. With state-of-the-art, highly versatile and flexible manufacturing facilities, Raymond UCO has been scaling greater heights in the denim world. Raymond UCO has an annual global manufacturing capacity of up to 50 million meters of denim fabric. The plant in India is spread over 169 acres and is strategically located in the heart of Central India’s cotton belt – Yavatmal. It is one of the most versatile, flexible and state-of-the-art fully vertical denim fabric manufacturing facility in the country.

Arvind Mathur, CEO, Raymond UCO Denim, speaks on the company’s collaboration with Swiss innovator HeiQ and their functional denim range – SHIELD, and its unique features.

Tell us more about your collaboration with Swiss innovator HeiQ?
Raymond UCO has a long standing innovation partnership with HeiQ and the collaboration has been pivotal in global launch of innovative anti-bacterial fabrics a couple of years ago with HeiQ Pure. Our consistent engagement has placed another milestone in our innovation history with the launch of high-performance anti-viral denim fabrics.

Tell us more about functional denim range - SHIELD. What are its unique features?
SHIELD collection is a compelling innovation in the area of personal health & hygiene, offering a wide range of denim fabrics that aim to fight viruses & bacteria. The fabrics offer high protection against bacterial and viral activity and can stay effective even after repeated home laundry washes.

So how is the demand for these products? Are expecting rise in demand? Have you expanded your facility to produce these fabrics?
We see a steady increase in demand for these products although many of such requests are still in enquiry stage. We are optimistic that consumer’s focus on health and hygiene will give right momentum to these products in the coming months. The SHIELD collection is made from our existing infrastructure and doesn’t demand any expansion, which is quite an advantage.

How foolproof is this whole process? Is anti-viral fabric enough to safeguard the wearer from a severe virus like SARS-CoV-2?
HeiQ Viroblock technology has been tested for anti-bacterial and anti-viral resistance as per international test norms. The test results have shown reduction in viral activity against a dozen viruses, including SARS-CoV-2, H1N1, H5N1, H7N9, H3N2, and sendai virus.

While the HeiQ Viroblock technology offers protection to textile surfaces from bacterial or viral activity, the wearer has to ensure other hygiene practices like wearing masks, washing hands, maintaining social distance etc., to stay protected from SARS-CoV-2 viruses.

There are no reports saying that coronavirus can even enter through other natural or even synthetic fibres. So what makes your product so unique?
Studies suggest that viruses and bacteria can remain infective on textile surfaces for days. Human Coronavirus (SARS-CoV) persist for up to two days on surgical gowns at room temperature. In this context, antiviral treatments for textiles can potentially reduce the risk of transmission and cross-contamination thus ensuring hygiene and safety. HeiQ Viroblock is a unique combination of advanced silver and vesicle components which is imparted technically on the fabric surface. These active components in the HeiQ Viroblock help kill bacteria and destroy common harmful enveloped viruses.

Is the government providing any support? What are your expectations from the government?
No specific support is being provided by the government so far. The government could help by making public aware of the benefits of using anti-viral material, including textiles.

Raymond UCO launches high performance anti-viral denim
Raymond UCO in partnership with Swiss textile innovator HeiQ, has launched a highly protective denim fabric range with HeiQ Viroblock, a sustainable, antiviral and antimicrobial technology that has been tested and proven effective to destroy 99.99 per cent viruses. Raymond UCO’s association with HeiQ has been pivotal in global launch of innovative anti-bacterial fabrics a couple of years ago with HeiQ Pure. Along with this latest launch, Raymond UCO has also unveiled its signature functional denim range SHIELD.

SHIELD collection is a compelling innovation in the area of personal health & hygiene, offering a wide range of denim fabrics that aim to fight viruses and bacteria. This innovative denim range also features fabric powered by HeiQ Viroblock technology which has been tested effective against a dozen viruses and bacteria, including SARS-CoV-2, H1N1, H5N1, H7N9, H3N2, and sendai virus, all with an effectiveness above 99.99 per cent.

Studies suggest that viruses and bacteria can remain infective on textile surfaces for days. Human Coronavirus (SARS-CoV) persist for up to two days on surgical gowns at room temperature. In this context, antiviral treatments for textiles can significantly reduce the risk of transmission and contamination thus ensuring hygiene and safety. HeiQ Viroblock is a unique combination of advanced silver and vesicle components which is imparted technically on the fabric surface. These active components in the HeiQ Viroblock kill bacteria and destroy common harmful enveloped viruses within a short time span of two minutes of exposure (according to modified AATCC100 test conducted on Sendai virus). HeiQ Viroblock is designed to last on the fabric even after repeated domestic washes.

HeiQ Viroblock is certified as safe and sustainable with all its ingredients designated as cosmetic grade, bio-based and recycled. Beta Analytics Testing Laboratory has certified that HeiQ Viroblock contains 72 per cent bio-based carbon. It is EU REACH and US FIFRA compliant, OEKOTEX certified, ZDHC and bluesign homologised. Denims treated with HeiQ Viroblock are complaint with EU BPR and US EPA. The HeiQ Viroblock ingredient is marketed under brand name HeiQ V-Block in the USA.

“We are very grateful to see how the entire textile industry is working hard to adapt the world’s best antiviral textile technology into not only face masks and PPEs, but also daily clothing like denim. Consumers want to feel protected and to have to worry about touching the clothes on their own body is the last thing anyone wants! I am sure the SHIELD collection, powered by HeiQ Viroblock will contribute to resuming our normal lives earlier and with much higher confidence,” stated Carlo Centonze, co-founder and CEO of HeiQ Group.