An antibacterial additive for laundry detergent and a cleaning solution for electronic gadgets are the picks of this month's novel launches in the household goods industry. Both products play on aspects of modern consumer lifestyles, with one tapping into current preoccupations with the threat of contagious diseases, and the other underlining the proliferation of electronic devices in households.
In the UK, Challs has launched a laundry additive which promises to transform any washing detergent into a powerful cleaner. According to the company, one in five wash cycles needs "enhancement" to tackle stains, and the new Boost Antibacterial Laundry Detergent Enhancer is said to remove stubborn stains, eliminate odors, and kill germs. Food, grease, mud, sweat marks, grass, and blood are among the stains claimed to be tackled, while the antibacterial action is said to be effective even at low temperatures. The idea of a germ-killing additive for laundry soap is an unusual one, but could tap into current concerns about disease and domestic cleanliness.
Meanwhile, the environmental impact of disposable tableware is the focus of attention for a company in the US. Ultra Green has recently unveiled "revolutionary" disposable cutlery and plates made from renewable resources such as sugarcane and cornstarch. The range is comprised of several products geared towards the green market: the Ultra Green Premium Picnic Pack; Three Compartments Premium Dinner Plates; Premium Oval Platters; Premium Cups; 1 Ply Premium Lunch Napkins; and 2 Ply Premium Dinner Napkins. Described as a new, more sustainable alternative to recycled products, the items biodegrade in 60-90 or 150 days, while at the same time, they are claimed to be able to withstand heat and hot liquids, as well as being microwave and freezer safe. This latest launch is indicative of the lengths to which companies are willing to go to outdo each other in the environmental stakes.
In the world of stain removal, a multi-faceted hob cleaning product is a noteworthy introduction in Germany. Recently launched by Delta Pronatura Dr. Krauss & Dr. Beckmann, the Dr. Beckmann Cleaning Block for Glass-Ceramic Hobs is a product which combines a solid block of detergent with a scouring sponge; the scouring sponge is designed to be soaked in water and rubbed across the surface of the block to pick up the detergent. The product is designed specifically for glass-ceramic and induction hobs, and as well as claiming to remove encrusted dirt it is touted as containing micro-polishing pearls that leave a silky shine. The launch underlines the increased value modern consumers place on the appearance, rather than just the cleanliness, of modern appliances.
Consumer gadgetry is the target of a new cleaner released in the UK by Reckitt Benckiser. Brasso Gadget Care Silicone Gel Gadget Cleaner is the name of the new product, which is promoted as cleaning and shining devices as diverse as smartphones, video game consoles, and televisions. The new launch is a rare modern update for a traditional brand which had previously limited itself to metal polish products, and indicates a desire by the company to widen brand appeal to a younger generation of consumers. However, given the delicate and permeable nature of many consumer electronics, a liquid cleaner is an unusual departure from the impregnated wipes more typically associated with the cleaning of electronic goods.
Finally, in the crowded field of air fresheners, Brazil-based Kapeh Cosmeticos has introduced a new range in its home market which draws on the aromas of the coffee plantation. Kapeh Air Freshener Spray is available in Coffee Flower and Refreshing Coffee varieties, and is said to gently fragrance the air. The range is drawing on authentic natural aromas, as well as Brazil's national identity, in an attempt to find favor with consumers.