Did you know that the National Regulator for compulsory specifications in South Africa?
Disinfectants are formulated chemicals used in the food, health services and many other industries where they relied on to render inanimate surfaces free of microorganisms such as counters, tap handles, door handles – these are all the areas we are cleaning vigorously now due to the COVID-19 pandemic. There are a multitude of active ingredients or combinations that provide disinfecting and cleaning properties. The Department of Trade and Industry are responsible for ensuring that any product that is claimed to be a disinfectant should meet or exceed the performance claimed on the label and supporting publicity material and data sheets.
All disinfectants sold in the Republic of South Africa are covered by this compulsory specification known as VC 8054. If a disinfectant complies with the requirements of this compulsory specification, it can be considered to be bactericidal, fungicidal, sporicidal or virucidal, but it should not necessarily be inferred that it is suitable for a defined purpose. The regulation unfortunately only covers requirements for disinfectants intended for use on inanimate or hard surfaces. It does not cover antiseptics or bacteriostatic agents nor hand sanitisers.
All disinfectants must therefore be registered and you should be able to identify this from the packaging as the regulation requires a label with the following:
Want to check if what’s in your trolley or cupboard is registered and therefore living up to it’s “claims”? Here is the current list of brands tested by the NRCS. IF your product is not here – perhaps ask a few more questions.
This is also the procedure that must be followed for you to get your product tested as a manufacturer.
For more information, please check out this site: https://www.nrcs.org.za/content_sub.asp?ssID=39
There are also a number of national standards for disinfectants - these are available for purchase at the SANS store
A special note on hand sanitisers
There are currently NO regulations relating to hand sanitisers.
This is critically important given the current Pandemic where the shelves are bare.
For manufacturers – now is not the time to deviate from the formulation to make more money. With so many people relying on this measure to protect themselves, lives may be at stake.
There are some national standards for these products. These are VOLUNTARY Standards but as a responsible manufacturer, you should be looking at this very seriously.
SANS 1330:1981 - Waterless hand cleaners
The CDC has published this guidance: The CDC is providing this advice " Handwashing mechanically removes pathogens, while laboratory data demonstrate that 60% ethanol and 70% isopropanol, the active ingredients in CDC-recommended alcohol-based hand sanitizers, inactivates viruses that are genetically related to, and with similar physical properties as, the 2019-nCoV."
The WHO have provided this recipe https://www.who.int/gpsc/5may/Guide_to_Local_Production.pdf