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TSA and De Montfort University announce new hygiene protocols
 Setting the new standards for laundry safety

TSA and De Montfort University announce new laundry hygiene protocols


Laundering textiles plays an important role in maintaining hygienic cleanliness but is particularly sensitive in settings like food production and healthcare. Following a collaborative research project between the Textile Services Association and De Montfort University to establish a hygiene protocol test for laundries, the two organisations have announced the results, with the aim to help guarantee laundry is cleaned hygienically.


The study was run by Professor Katie Laird, a microbiologist at De Montfort University. Professor Laird and her research team have extensive experience in studying healthcare textiles, publishing papers that demonstrated how long bacteria can survive on clothing, and wash processes that can decontaminate laundry, among others.


The vital nature of ensuring laundry is hygienically clean was highlighted as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, during which the focus of the research project switched to determine whether Coronavirus could survive on and be transmitted by textiles.


Professor Laird and her team were able to determine that it could survive on textiles, however if laundry was washed at 60⁰C for ten minutes or 71⁰C for three minutes it would be decontaminated. This knowledge helped save the laundry industry millions of pounds, as well as preventing an increase in the industry’s carbon footprint, by making a planned increase to 90⁰C washes unnecessary.


Following this the focus of the research returned to developing test protocols for all laundry processes over 60⁰C, ensuring that bacteria is being killed by the wash process. The resulting protocol has been adopted by the NHS, but TSA and De Montfort University will be continuing their collaboration to understand the needs of other healthcare related sectors, such as care homes, in order to help improve standards.


“As many members of the TSA provide laundry services for the healthcare sector it is vital that we support them to ensure they are attaining the highest possible standards,” says David Stevens, chief executive officer of the TSA. “This study has already delivered amazing results and a robust procedure for ensuring laundry safety, and we will continue to support future research.”


Professor Laird is certain about the importance of the collaboration between De Montfort University and the TSA. “We have worked together to create an internationally recognised protocol for standardising the assessment of the decontamination of laundry,” she says. “It’s important progress for the laundry industry and the next phase of research will be equally exciting for other sectors.”


Further information on the new hygiene protocols can be found HERE


The TSA is the trade association for the textile care services industry. The TSA represents commercial laundry and textile rental businesses. Membership ranges from family-run operations through to large, multi-national companies.  Visit for more information. 

Press Enquiries:

The Publicity Works: 01263 761000; 

David Stevens, CEO, Textile Services Association,

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