Overview of antimicrobial solutions for plastic goods

Microbic growth is common among untreated plastic goods. This phenomenon becomes one of the main attributes for unpleasant odors, unsightly discoloration and polymer degradation.

Antimicrobial additives can thus be applied to plastic resins during the process of compounding or as a masterbatch in order to mold and also to provide biocide treatment, thus controlling microbes.

Some of the most common microbes antimicrobials are proven to be effective against yeasts, algae, mold fungi, mildew fungi and among other microbes.

There are multiple antimicrobial technologies that are available; these are compatible with an array of thermoplastic resins. Silver-based antimicrobial is one such instance. A practice common since centuries, silver is widely used as a biosatic agent. In contact with moisture, the electrochemical reaction releases a number of silver ions. As these ions penetrate, microbes are rendered unable to grow, to reproduce and to function altogether.

Among others, articles that are suitable for antimicrobial treatment are business machines and consumer appliances, sports and recreation equipment, medical devices, FDA 510(k), general household goods, and food processing and handling machinery.

One can determine the suitability of antimicrobial technologies to an applicant’s requirement by asking questions like, do products already use antimicrobial protection; what is the end-use application and its typical usage environment; do the antimicrobial additive require to function in a specific resin; are other additives also included in the resin; what is the roll cost of the antimicrobial technology; and finally, what is the antimicrobial efficacy and other performance requirements that need to be covered.