Symphony Environmental Technologies has warned the new polymer plastic bank notes due to be introduced in the UK from 2016 could carry dangerous bacteria from one person to another.
The advanced plastics firm has developed an anti-microbial and anti-fungal formulation called d2p which reduces the danger of bacterial infection.
It can be added to most types of plastic, and recommended it be introduced with the new bank notes.
A spokesperson for Symphony told Packaging News the company is in the process of approaching all the central banks in the countries where it does business, including the Bank Of England.
The firm pointed to a 2012 report by Queen Mary University which showed that 14% of paper bank notes and 10% of bank cards were contaminated with faecal organisms.
Additionally, 8% of cards and 6% of notes showed contamination at the level you would expect in a lavatory bowl.
Michael Laurier, Symphony chief executive, said: “Some of these bacteria can be extremely dangerous and have proved resistant to antibiotics, so we need to deal with them before they get into our bodies. It should be introduced as quickly as possible, not just for banknotes, but for bank cards, driving licences, bus passes, retail cards, shopping bags, computer keyboards, steering-wheels, telephones, door handles, and many other applications.”
Article taken from Packaging News 7/01/14 – here