COMMERCIAL CLEANING: David Midgley (left) and Paul Hamilton of RegeneX
RegeneX, the linen recovery specialist, has officially launched its commercial textile cleaning system following a successful two-year pilot. The Bradford-based company has developed a gentle, multi-bath cleaning system that can lift tough stains, so that previously rejected items last longer and fulfil their lifetime usage potential.
Regenex founders David Midgley, Paul Hamilton and Matthew Whitehead set about devising a new cleaning method that they believed could shift more complex stains commercial laundry companies find hard to remove – including self-tan, ink, mildew and concrete marks – from a range of fabrics.
Half a million pounds of investment has already been ploughed into Regenex since 2016. In that time the 25,000sqft facility – with capacity to expand – has handled 300 tonnes of condemned linen and apparel from the hospitality, healthcare and workwear sectors, that was otherwise destined to be ragged or landfilled. The team said that 74% has been restored and returned to commercial laundries’ pool stock, to continue its useful economic life.
The average net cost saving – when compared to clients having to re-purchase each item – is 35%, but this figure has reached up to 80% for chefs’ apparel.
The fully-commercial operation employs 12 people and with capacity to handle at least 15 tonnes of linen per week, Regenex is on the hunt for more clients. The team is even offering a 400kg free trial to commercial laundry businesses in the UK, to demonstrate the effectiveness of the new system.
David Midgley explained: “Continuous batch washing systems have made great headway in the reduction of energy usage, for example, but some extreme stains remain difficult to remove. We’ve been told that up to 50% of linen returned to hotels for example, is still dirty. For many people, this renders items as nothing but ‘waste’, which we know is not the case. We believe therefore that the Regenex process can only complement the efforts of the continuous batch washers – enabling the UK to ‘love its linen for longer’.”
For the small proportion of linen where a stain cannot be successfully cleaned, the team prioritises an overdyeing process that enables towels, bedlinen and workwear to be reused, as a darker coloured item.
Steam and hot water from the Regenex plant is used by neighbouring textiles facilities. “We’re delighted with how the pilot project has unfolded, and the sums customers are doing with our step-by-step calculator, are uncovering some very powerful savings,” said David Midgley. “I’m incredibly excited to see what 2019 will bring.”