MIDLAND, Mich.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Washing hands with soap is a proven way to prevent the spread of life-threatening diseases, especially among children. In fact, nearly 2 million children under the age of 5 die each year from infectious diseases. In recognition of Global Handwashing Day, Dow is shining a light on its technology leadership through a research and development collaboration with Lifebuoy™ soap from Unilever that is expected to deliver a positive impact on health and hygiene around the world.
Lifebuoy™, the world’s #1 germ protection soap, uses DOW POLYOX™ Water-Soluble Polymers in its unique formulation, creating a soap that lasts longer, provides better value and yet still feels great on the skin.
“A simple bar of soap features many complex chemistries,” said A.N. Sreeram, corporate vice president of Research and Development at Dow. “By collaborating directly with the Lifebuoy R&D team, we realized that the challenges they faced could be addressed with controlled release technology to design a bar of soap formulated to stay intact while releasing ingredients slowly and at the right time.
“Using Dow’s vast knowledge and expertise, we were able to apply our proven POLYOX technology in a new application to meet not only our customer’s, but also their users’ needs. It all comes back to good science.”
Due to its broad global impact on health and hygiene, Dow has named the technology as a “Breakthrough to World Challenges.”
Addressing Global Needs through Collaboration
Lifebuoy™ equips more people with a first line of defense against illnesses through the simple act of handwashing. By enabling a longer lasting and better quality bar of soap, POLYOX Polymers support Unilever’s Sustainable Living Plan targets.
“Dow’s polymer technology is a great example of how collaboration can result in leading innovation and outstanding results. This technology has helped to grow the Lifebuoy™ brand while also playing a prominent role in supporting our Sustainable Living Plan goal of helping more than a billion people take action to improve their health and well-being by 2020,” comments David Blanchard, chief Research and Development officer at Unilever.
2015 Sustainability Goals and “Breakthroughs to World Challenges”
With this breakthrough technology, Dow exceeds the target established in 2006 as part of its 2015 Sustainability Goals, an aggressive set of 10-year goals that seeks to improve sustainability in seven core areas: Sustainable Chemistry; Addressing Climate Change; Energy Efficiency and Conservation; Product Safety Leadership; Contributing to Community Success; Local Protection of Human Health and the Environment, and Breakthroughs to World Challenges. Dow’s “Breakthrough to World Challenges” commitment identifies products and technologies that deliver significant contributions to societal challenges over time.
To be selected, breakthrough technologies are subjected to a rigorous evaluation process that measures many candidates in Dow’s business portfolio against a variety of criteria, from positive impact on millions of human lives, to minimal environmental impact throughout the product’s lifecycle. Dow’s previously announced breakthroughs include Omega-9 Oils, DOW FILMTEC™ ECO Reverse Osmosis Elements and BETAMATE™ Structural Adhesives.
Handwashing: Our First Defense
Global Handwashing Day is dedicated to raising global awareness of the importance of hand washing with soap and water. The campaign was initiated by the global Public-Private Partnership for ‘Handwashing with Soap’ to reduce childhood mortality rates related to respiratory and diarrheal diseases by introducing a simple lifestyle change. With regular handwashing, the mortality rate from preventable diseases, such as diarrhea and pneumonia, can be reduced by nearly 50 percent.1 Every year, 1.7 million children die before the age of 5 as a result of diarrhea and pneumonia.2 Hand washing with soap is among the most effective and inexpensive ways to stop the spread of preventable diseases, which can save lives, cutting deaths from diarrhea by almost one-half and deaths from acute respiratory infections by nearly one-quarter.3
For more information, visit www.cleanhands.dow.com.
Dow (NYSE: DOW) combines the power of science and technology to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The Company is driving innovations that extract value from the intersection of chemical, physical and biological sciences to help address many of the world's most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, clean energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow's integrated, market-driven, industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 180 countries and in high growth sectors such as packaging, electronics, water, coatings and agriculture. In 2013, Dow had annual sales of more than $57 billion and employed approximately 53,000 people worldwide. The Company's more than 6,000 products are manufactured at 201 sites in 36 countries across the globe. References to "Dow" or the "Company" mean The Dow Chemical Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless otherwise expressly noted. More information about Dow can be found at www.dow.com.
About Unilever R&D
Unilever R&D involves over 6,000 professionals, six strategic centres for global R&D and 31 major product development centres. The strategic centres are located in Trumbull, US, Port Sunlight and Colworth in the UK, Vlaardingen in The Netherlands, Bangalore and Shanghai. In 2013, Unilever investment in R&D was around €1bn.
1. CHERG 2010. Sandy Cairncross, Caroline Hunt, Sophie Boisson, Kristof Bostoen, Val Curtis, Isaac CH Fung, and Wolf-Peter Schmidt Water, sanitation and hygiene for the prevention of diarrhoea.Int. J. Epidemiol. 2010 39: i193-i205
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