One-of-its-kind, rechargeable, BioRefresh technology
Coimbatore, is a name that has become synonymous with the textile industry. The city’s inherent dynamic entrepreneurial spirit perhaps found its best calling in the field of textiles. It is not surprising that several top names in the textile industry call this city home. One of the most popular among them is KG Denim, a premier denim and apparel fabric manufacturer, catering to leading fashion brands and retailers worldwide. The company is part of the diversified KG group of companies, with diversified interests in education, engineering, information technology and entertainment.
The totally integrated textile conglomerate offers a wide range of products including, garments, home textiles, dyed fabrics, denim manufacturing, dyeing, processing, weaving, spinning and cotton processing.
KG Denim has been in the news recently for launching ‘Trigger HealtHive’ medical protective gear solutions to fight human Corona virus. Trigger HealtHive offers a wide range of health and hygiene related products, featuring ‘BioRefresh’, a new technology, which has the potential to be a real game changer for the company.
Given the fact that India, along with most parts of the world has been hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic, the emergence of an indigenously manufactured health and hygiene product range including face masks, PPE coveralls and other protective gear, has come as a shot in the arm for Indian manufacturing expertise.
We caught up with Mr.B.Sriramulu, the Managing Director of KG Denim Limited for an exclusive chat, wherein he spoke at length about various topics, including the launch of HealtHive, BioRefresh technology, what makes the technology special, and the company’s future plans, among others.
Here are the edited excerpts.
For a company that gave the world the popular ‘Trigger’ brand of denim wear, constant innovation has always been in the DNA of its corporate culture. Trigger HealtHive was the result of this passion for offering something innovative, which would also be beneficial to the masses during these trying times.
” As everyone knows that entire world is grappling with the Covid-19 pandemic. We felt that there was broad gap existing in the field of protective clothing, which led to this development. The shortage was glaring, particularly during the initial burst of the pandemic in our country. We wanted to do something that can be sustained for a longer period. Our thrust on fulfiling this need resulted in the advent of ‘BioRefresh range of products, a one-of-its kind technology,” Mr. Sriramulu said going into details of the trigger behind the launch of Trigger HealtHive.
According to Mr. Sriramulu, the objective behind launching Trigger HealtHive is to offer an ecommerce platform focusing on all products pertaining to health and hygiene segments. He further added that all the core products are indigenously manufactured and supplied by the company.
So, what it is the ‘BioRefresh’ technology all about? Replying to this Mr. Sriramulu mentioned:” The BioRefresh technology is one of its kind by nature, innovative and based on rechargeable chemistry by principle. We offer anti-microbial effectiveness for 80 washes ; garments made out of these fabrics contains active chlorine on its surface, which gets recharged with a treatment of chlorine containing detergents, for e.g. Rin Ala, under recommended conditions. This is a real ‘Atmanirbhar’ project. It is fully indigenous Research & Development and localised development.”
Why BioRefresh technology?
The products designed with the next – gen technology, BioRefresh, harness the power of washing detergents to renew its antimicrobial and antiviral characteristics.
Under suitable humidity, warmth and nutrients, textiles are good media for the growth of microorganisms, such as bacteria, fungi and viruses. Surface contamination by microorganisms are a major cause of transmission of infectious diseases. Contact transmission of Staphylococcus aureus (SA) and Multi-drug Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) are the major causes of MRSA spread to public spaces.Biocidal materials are able to kill microorganisms and eliminate growth of microorganisms, can therefore protect wearers of the textiles from biological attacks, in addition to preserving the materials.
It is not only important to kill these microbes, but it is highly essential to destroy them at a faster rate to avoid their transmission. Products made out of BioRefresh material, enables the reduction of infection in humans in the healthcare-related areas, including schools, hospitals, canteen and food packaging industries.
BioRefresh fabrics are durable for 80 washes under recommended wash conditions. Tested under AATCC 100:2012 standards, the treated fabrics exhibit antimicrobial and antiviral performance of 99, 5% and consistent on repeated washes under recommended conditions.
Explaining how different are fabrics treated with BioRefresh technology, when compared to conventional products, Mr. Sriramulu mentioned: “The fabrics treated with regular chemicals demonstrates good properties but the antibacterial property is reduced with increased washing times. After 10-15 washes, the power of the conventional treated fabrics reduces by around 50% whereas the BioRefresh fabrics get recharged repeatedly by absorbing the chlorine from the detergents which is used during the washing or chlorinated water to provide powerful disinfectant functions, thus, providing 99.9% protection against many common bacteria and viruses.”
KG Denim Circumference Fabrics (TM) is another one of the company’s protective medical gear solution, launched along with Trigger HealtHive. The woven reusable coverall medical barrier fabrics meet ANSI/AAMI PB 70 standards.
Salient features of KG Denim Circumference Fabrics(TM) include:-
• Technology that is EPA registered, EU Reach compliant, EU BPR approved and OKEO-TEX registered.
• Aqueous zinc pyrithione base helps in killing the microbial germs and bad odour, keeps freshness.
• Resistant to repeated washes with chlorox base products resulting in durable, comfort product.
• Can be used for all general purpose medical wear and products.
• Adds an effective barrier to liquid penetration with antimicrobial treated fabrics with added anti- stain properties.
• Enables strong resistant to MRSA (methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus) and many other bacteria.
• Inhibits growth of microbes, enhances antifungal and antibacterial properties.
• Gives fabrics anti stain finish.
In the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, the competition in the masks, PPE and other protective gear market segment has been intensifying by the day. Product differentiation has therefore become a crucial aspect for the players in the segment to be ahead of the race. Explaining what gives the BioRefresh products the competitive edge, Mr. Sriramulu said: “The products what we offer are not meant for special purposes but products for anytime use by anyone and protective by nature. With the kind of technology involved and the product durability offered, we expect our products to meet up to their intended needs and be true to their price. “
Foresees sustained demand
The product range launched, including, coveralls, PPE kits, surgical/non-surgical masks & gloves and hospital furnishings have already made deep inroads into the Indian market. The company is also planning to target key export markets like the European Union, US and Middle East markets in the near future.
Enabling the innovations in the company has been its robust manufacturing and R&D infrastructure. Elaborating on the set up Mr. Sriramulu stated: “We normally employ advanced technologies at our manufacturing units. Our R&D infrastructure matches that of any leading textile manufacturer globally. We have an excellent skillset spread over a wide area of the clothing value chain. We keep innovating new ideas and methods that can help the industry grow,” he said.
Mr. Sriramulu feels that the demand for medical protective gear solutions is not going to come down any time soon. He felt that the ongoing demand for specially treated fabrics, masks, PPEs, anti-microbial finishes, etc., will continue for some more time. “In the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, awareness levels about health and hygiene has definitely risen. We therefore, expect the demand for quality products in this market segment to be sustained in the foreseeable future, “he said signing off.