Demand for biodegradable flushable wipes ‘set to rise’, manufacturer says

Demand for biodegradable flushable wipes is set to rise significantly following the Government’s decision to ban versions containing plastic, but – says DDC Dolphin – many ‘flushable’ wipes are not fully biodegradable, and can thus still block sluice machines, toilets, drains, and sewers.

The sluice room technology and infection prevention and control specialist warns that they can also leave harmful microplastics in the environment. It explained: “In contrast, our eco-friendly maceratable and flushable wipes for hospitals and care homes are confirmed as fully biodegradable and compostable, complying with EDANA and INDA flushability standards.

Manufactured from 100% non-woven cellulosic material, DDC Dolphin’s wipes – which  it says were a UK first – do not damage sluice equipment or block drains. Available as either wet or dry wipes, they ‘break down completely into non-toxic components’, enabling their safe disposal in  in medical pulp macerators, bedpan washer-disinfectors, slop hoppers, or toilets.

The move to ban non-flushable wipes is being driven by the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs, ‘echoing public concerns about the amount of microplastic waste left in the environment after discarded wipes break down’.  DDC Dolphin said: “Water UK – the water industry’s trade association – blames wet wipes for 93% of sewer blockages, putting the annual cost of unblocking them at around £100 million.”

New legislation for England is due ahead of Parliament’s summer recess, starting on 23 July, with legislation for Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, expected this autumn. The new legislation would include an 18-month transition period to help businesses and other organisations adapt.

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