Nexeo develops outdoor furniture protection technology

US-based plastics producer Nexeo Solutions has partnered with Italian textile producer and outdoor furniture manufacturer, Ramfil and antimicrobial plastics supplier Parx Plastics, to develop a biocompatible, skin-safe product to treat bacteria and fungi growth on outdoor furniture.

The technology, developed with Parx antimicrobial Sanypolymers, features antibacterial and antifungal properties on the textile’s filament which remain active throughout the lifetime of the product.

Textiles used in outdoor furniture applications often suffer from discolouration from exposure to moist conditions such as harsh weather, lack of ventilation, or contact with wet floors, swimwear or towels. Over time, constant moisture degrades the colour, quality and product life of outdoor furniture such as sunbeds, beach chairs or umbrellas. These conditions are prime for bacteria and fungi growth, resulting in further textile deterioration.

Paolo Bortolli, commercial manager Italy at Nexeo Solutions, says: “The Italian industrial environment thrives from small and medium companies bringing innovation to the market. I am sure this case opens the door to many other customers that have similar needs. Our customer had a quality challenge that was the perfect field for Nexeo to bring added value by offering an innovative solution. The technical expertise and coordination capabilities have been key to the success of this project, however teaming up with our customer and supplier to assess from the concept solution, the testing phase to the materialisation of the project has been Nexeo’s fundamental contribution to this disruptive innovative result.”

Arturo Cocco, technical director at Ramfil, says: “This is the first disruptive innovation of our industry after 40 years. I am happy that Nexeo Solutions was able to help us on this development. We are confident this application provides a significant step change on the quality and durability of our products besides reinforcing our high regard to Eco friendly products.”

Michele Fiori, chief technical officer at Parx Plastics, says: “We’d been searching for a company to collaborate with for some time to build on our market for antimicrobial Sanypolymers. Nexeo Solutions bought in our project from day one. With a very strong plastics distribution arm and a reputation for building long-lasting relationships, Nexeo Solutions stood out as the company to approach.”

This technology can be used for numerous applications. It proves suitable for plastics that come in contact with foodstuff or materials for other regulated applications, as it presents no increased migration and uses only allowed substances.