As the leaves begin to fall and our bodies adapt to the colder temperatures, there is a corresponding increase in viruses and flu-like symptoms. Recent reports in the media about the threat of Enterovirus D68 and Ebola highlights the importance of proper hygiene as a preventative tool during this change of season.

“REQUIREMENT: Clean and Safe!” As people have become increasingly aware of and concerned about health and safety issues, businesses have come under significant pressure to take active measures in order to safeguard the health and safety of their workers, customers and the surrounding environment.

Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) has undoubtedly become an important occupational health and safety issue. Recent studies have shown that the air inside homes and commercial buildings can be 2 to 10 times more polluted than outside air1. As a building owner, operator, or a property manager, it is important to assess the Indoor Air Quality in your building(s) and to examine ways in which it can be improved. Everyone, including building occupants and visitors, is encouraged to play a role in improving Indoor Air Quality in his surrounding environment.

Canadian children spend a significant amount of time in schools. Students spend approximately 1600 hours per year in primary and secondary schools. With kids in school for an average of 18 years, one can only imagine the time spent inside a school environment during their formative years. We need to ensure that all schools are free of indoor environmental pollutants and irritants that could affect the health and productivity of students and staff. A school’s environment possesses great potential to impact the health and futures of the individuals within them, and the strength and productivity of society itself. Therefore, it is critical that schools provide a healthy environment for learning and growing.

Cross contamination has always been a key concern for medical facilities and for the food service industry. As a result of the threat of pandemics such as H1N1 or swine flu as well as the increase in incidences of respiratory illnesses and allergies, custodians must now
also take cross contamination very seriously.

As if foodservice operators did not already have enough challenges on their
hands in this “germaphobic” world we live in, H1N1 and the green movement has quickly forced operators to step up their approach to cleaning and hand sanitizing. Below are some helpful hints and tools to help you compete more effectively in today’s marketplace and to successfully grow your business.

Success in the restaurant business can be elusive. With the variety and quantity of restaurants available, it is increasingly difficult to attract new clientele and to impress regular customers. The same challenge applies to retaining employees.
Keeping workers happy and productive can prove to be tricky.


The Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) is a system that defines and classifies the hazards of chemical products, and communicates health and safety information on labels and material safety data sheets (referred to as Safety Data Sheets in GHS) so that information on physical hazards and toxicity is available to help protect the human health and the environment during the handling, transport and use of these chemicals. GHS provides the basis for worldwide-standardized regulations on chemicals at the national and regional level. In Canada, the transition to GHS will be done in phases.
Find out what you need to know to be GHS Ready.

According to Health Canada, Canadians spend close to 90% of their time inside either at home, at work, or in recreational environments. Most people, however, are unaware of the effects that poor indoor air quality can have on their health. The air inside a building carries much higher concentrations of pollutants than the air outside and, also we are exposed to building pollutants for longer periods. 

Let’s face it, nobody wants to be sick. It is an inconvenience to you, your family and your co-workers, as well as to your employer. Yet, according to the Conference Board of Canada, Canadian absenteeism rates are high – and rising. Absenteeism has increased by 14% since 1992. It costs employers $603 a day for each day that an employee is not at work. In Canada alone, absenteeism costs the country an alarming $10 billion a year and it is one of the major issues confronting employers. Many of the ailments which cause absenteeism (such as the common cold, the flu, gastroenteritis) are preventable through proper hand washing and the implementation of an effective cleaning program in the workplace.

It is only a matter of time before the green cleaning movement hits the food service industry. There are a couple of interesting trends that will see operators of foodservice facilities take a proactive role in implementing sustainable cleaning solutions.

Take into account the many things you do in a day including blowing your nose, playing with the dog, talking on the telephone, typing on the computer, touching the doorknobs; bring your hands into contact with germs.
For this reason, frequent hand washing is the single most important thing you can do to prevent yourself from getting sick as well as from spreading germs to other surfaces and to other people.

According to a recent census, seniors now make up the fastest growing age group in the country. With a 27 percent increase since 2001, there are currently 5 million people aged 65 and over in Canada, marking a trend that will continue to rise. Statistics Canada projects the number of seniors will double over the next 25 years to more than 10 million by 2036 , outnumbering children for the first
time in history.

Are you looking for a cost-effective solution to implement a safer and healthier maintenance program for your business? Here are some tips and guidelines to direct you in making the right choice for your company.

School rankings, along with your programs, curriculum, and reputation, play a crucial role in attracting new students to your educational institution. How does your institution rank? What proactive steps can you take to improve your institution’s ranking? The cleanliness of an educational institution and its maintenance program are not likely factors that you would consider as affecting its reputation. However, studies are showing that cleaning is not merely a necessary expense: ‘Green’ cleaning plays a role that can contribute to an educational institution’s success.

While many people feel that public washrooms are germ-ridden, few realize the true risks and “hot spots”. For instance, hot water taps are more of a danger zone for fecal bacteria than toilet seats and, flushing the toilet causes bacteria to propel around the washroom. Though it is difficult to link catching a disease to a visit to the bathroom, scientists have found infectious agents for diseases such as Hepatitis A, Meningitis, Bacterial Dysentery, the Norwalk Virus and various forms of diarrhea in public washrooms. Regular cleaning and upkeep of washrooms requires time and resources, but the extra effort is worth it.

Staphylococcus aureus (Staph aureus or “Staph”) is a bacterium that is carried on the skin of about 30 percent of healthy individuals. In this setting, the bacteria usually cause no symptoms. However, when the skin is damaged, even with a minor injury such as a scratch,
Staph can cause a wide range of problems, from a mild skin infection to a severe, life-threatening illness, especially in young children, older adults, and people with a weakened immune system.

Canadians’ food choices are driven by convenience, health and wellness, pleasure and value. From fast food restaurants to fine dining, the popularity of eating out has created a surge in food services. Eating out more often results in spending more of our income on restaurant meals. According to the Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association, the total commercial foodservice industry generated approximately $60 billion in sales in Canada in 2010. What’s more, Canadians make more than 17 million restaurant visits daily.

As more and more Canadians are dining out, food safety control is increasingly becoming a concern for both consumers and the food industry. Though Canada’s food supply is one of the safest in the world, foodborne illnesses are nevertheless fairly common. Health Canada tracks outbreaks and publishes the statistics in its annual report “Foodborne and Waterborne Disease in Canada”. It is estimated that for every case of foodborne disease reported, 350 cases go unreported. The report states that there are 2.2 million cases of people made sick by contaminated food in Canada, with up to one billion dollars being spent on medical support, lost income and associated expenses. Considering these significant costs, food safety is worthy of everyone’s attention, especially restaurant owners.

Effective green building can benefit your bottom line by increasing productivity and reducing operating costs (i.e. using less energy and water). It will also help safeguard the health and safety of your occupants while reducing the environmental impacts. As a result, it is becoming increasingly important for new constructions and existing buildings to be ‘green’ certified using the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) rating system. The flexibility of the LEED system allows for many different ways for your building to be green certified.


Effective cleaning is our first line of defense against viruses and infectious diseases. Most building owners and facility managers view cleaning as a cost rather than an investment. As cleaning solution providers, we need to explain to executives, especially those “who hold the purse strings,” that maintaining a clean environment can pay for itself many times over, and often in surprising ways.

With rising concerns over the spread of infectious diseases, viruses and germs, disinfectants and sanitizers are now more popular than ever. With so many options at your disposal and so many uses for these products, what is the best way to use these disinfectants and sanitizers?

Over the past decade, the concept of “Going Green” has taken the industry by
storm, transforming views and attitudes about cleaning. For an industry many perceived as being stuck in the past and slow to adapt to change, it has experienced an invigorating makeover. Going Green has been arguably the number one trend in the cleaning industry – and it shows no signs of slowing down. As more people are becoming aware of the hazardous chemicals used in conventional cleaning and their impact on health and the environment, the demand for Green Floor Care is growing stronger than ever.