Know Your Glove Materials: Part IV Poly


Polyethylene is the most affordable glove material and is used in the food service industry. Food service workers need a glove with enough durability for short-duration tasks, and poly gloves are the right choice.

What is polyethylene?
Like polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyethylene was first created by accident. German chemist Hans von Pechmann made the first polyethylene in 1898. In 1933, Reginald Gibson and Eric Fawcett, two scientists at Imperial Chemical Industries, also accidentally created polyethylene, and their employer would be the driving force behind the material’s innovation in early years.

Polyethylene is a polymer that is synthesized from ethylene and a thermoplastic that is formed into various shapes as it cools from a liquid state to a solid state.

There are different forms of polyethylene, with one being high-density polyethylene (HDPE), which is the harder form of the plastic. Low-density polyethylene (LDPE) is thinner, less opaque than HDPE and used to make plastic grocery bags, dispensing bottles and disposable gloves. It is a flexible and tough material though not as durable as other glove materials.

LDPE is a non-leaching plastic in its natural state. This means it will not release unwanted chemicals into food, which is why poly gloves are suitable for the food service industry. Additionally, LDPE is used for creating protective film for food packaging.

Two polyethylene sheets are seamed and sealed with heat to create disposable gloves. Because poly gloves are not dipped like latex, nitrile and vinyl gloves, they are not impervious to liquids. Vinyl gloves are a suitable alternative for food services tasks where liquids are present.

“Poly gloves are made from low-density polyethylene.”

What are the benefits of poly gloves?
The food service industry requires workers to change their gloves often. In a sandwich deli, for instance, an employee would make one customer’s order. Afterward, he or she should follow proper handwashing guidelines and don a new pair of gloves for the next customer. Given the frequency of these changes, the industry requires a cost-effective glove material, which is why poly gloves are the preferred choice.

Poly gloves are also powder and latex free. Both traits are beneficial for preventing allergic reactions among workers and customers. Given that the gloves directly touch food that is ingested, the latex and corn proteins that cause the reaction could easily enter a customer’s body, possibly leading to a more severe reaction. Poly gloves are a safe alternative.

AMMEXKnow Your Glove Materials: Part IV Poly
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The Right Gloves for the Job: Part V Agricultural


In the agricultural industry, workers are involved in a number of tasks where gloves serve as a protective barrier. These duties include working with livestock, handling chemicals such a herbicides and disinfectants and dealing with contaminated soil.

With regard to herbicides and insecticides, there are hundreds of varieties that are used in agriculture, each with chemicals that can be harmful to humans. Furthermore, it is important that personal protective equipment is used to reduce or eliminate exposure to these chemicals.

In the dairy farming sector, glove use has become more common in recent years. Gloves help prevent the spread of bacteria, which is key for dairy farming, as a sick animal is unproductive until it can be brought back to health.

There are various zoonotic diseases, which are those transmitted from animals to humans. One example is brucellosis, a disease that is caused by a bacteria known as brucella and primarily affects animals. However, humans can contract brucellosis if they come in contact with infected animals or animal products. Additionally, livestock handlers need to ensure they are not passing diseases from infected animals to healthy animals.

Workers also need protection when repairing and maintaining their fleet equipment. Whether tractors or combine harvesters, the machines contain chemicals that can cause health issues if they get onto a worker’s hands and absorb through the skin.

“With these risks, agricultural employees need a glove that can stand up to harsh chemicals and bacteria. Nitrile gloves protect agricultural workers from harmful chemicals in pesticides.”

Nitrile and latex gloves for chemicals and pesticides
Agriculture is currently trending toward lighter weight nitrile gloves which offer durability and chemical and pesticide resistance at a competitive price.Nitrile, a synthetic rubber, provides the best overall chemical resistance. Agricultural workers who spend their days spraying pesticides on crops have the risk that they could get the chemicals on their hands which could be absorbed through the skin. Nitrile gloves provide protection that will not easily break down when it comes into contact with harsh chemicals. This protection is also beneficial for guarding against the many fluids that workers can come into contact with while they are performing maintenance on vehicles.

Latex gloves are the second most-common glove in agriculture. These gloves are also donned when workers are dealing with pesticide residues. When handling plants and plant products, workers use latex gloves to protect themselves even if there are not visible signs of pesticides.  While latex previously was the most-used glove type in agriculture, nitrile gloves have become more popular.

Vinyl gloves for tending livestock
When it comes to tending livestock, vinyl gloves are a more suitable option compared to other glove materials, particularly for tasks that require several glove changes in a short time. Vinyl is an inexpensive material that is perfect for short-duration tasks as workers move from animal to animal to prevent cross contamination. Vinyl gloves are common in breeding applications.

Regardless of the application, it is important to remember gloves are not solely for safeguarding workers and livestock. They also protect government and private inspectors. These parties should also don the appropriate gloves to guard themselves and livestock they inspect and ensure the integrity of agricultural facilities.

AMMEXThe Right Gloves for the Job: Part V Agricultural
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Glove Up to Prevent Spread of Equine Coronavirus


Due to an increasing number of cases of equine coronavirus (ECoV) in adult horses, horse handlers have been advised to wear disposable gloves and take other precautions to keep the disease from spreading, according to equine health publication The Horse.

The virus is more common in foals, but data from Cornell University’s Animal Health Diagnostic Center confirmed higher prevalence rates between July 2013 and May 2014. Horses can suffer gastrointestinal diseases as a result of ECoV, which spreads among horses via fecal-oral transmission.

The source noted ECoV is highly infectious, and horses can shed the virus in their waste for weeks after showing signs of illness. Consequently, handlers should take the appropriate biosecurity measures, including wearing gloves, hand washing and disinfectant foot baths. These practices should be implemented for some time if handlers suspect horses at their facilities have contracted ECoV.

Gloves serve as a barrier between handlers and the virus. If they touch a sick animal with bare hands, they can transfer the virus. By properly donning a new pair of gloves for each horse and stall, handlers can help prevent the spread of ECoV.

In the event handlers must take care of healthy and sick horses at the same time, the American Association of Equine Practitioners suggests handlers tend to healthy horses first and dispose of all barrier clothing immediately after caring for sick horses.

Follow this link for more information.

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How Ill-Fitting Gloves can Compromise Safety


When employers require their employees to wear disposable gloves, they must ensure the proper glove material and sizes are used. If not, workers may neglect their compliance responsibilities. Don’t let ill-fitting gloves compromise your safety, and find the right sized gloves for your application.

Why You Should Use the Proper Sized Gloves

This was one finding noted in research by Ethan Bernstein, an assistant professor of business administration at Harvard Business School. While examining how factory-floor workers behaved when they were being watch compared to when they were not, he discovered employees will not properly wear their sized gloves if they did not fit correctly, particularly if the gloves reduced productivity, according to Business Insider.

In some cases, employees wore only one glove or cut off the fingertips to increase their working speed. This can present health and safety risks for employees and consumers. In the food processing industry, for instance, gloves help prevent the spread of foodborne illnesses such as listeria and salmonella. Additionally, gloves protect consumers against poor worker hygiene.

In the food processing industry, in particular, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), or vinyl, gloves are typically used. For his experiment, Bernstein noticed the glove material makes all the difference. For example, latex or nitrile gloves, which conform more closely to the hand than other glove materials, would be suitable for handling small parts.

Given the speed required in manufacturing, having the right sized gloves is essential. Consequently, employers must ensure their workers have gloves that fit properly. Incorrect sizing can reduce comfort and increase the risk of tearing. By finding the right material and following best practices for donning gloves, employers can ensure workers are adhering to procedures and protecting themselves and consumers.

If you need help finding the right sized gloves to fit your needs, check out our AMMEX Glove Size Chart.

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Know Your Glove Materials: Part II Latex


When you think of a disposable glove, a latex glove is traditionally what comes to mind. This type of glove has been used in various industries for years for both medical and industrial applications. Let’s take a look into the making and success behind wholesale latex gloves.

Many consumers are familiar with exam-grade latex gloves, which are common in the health care facilities. However, even in this familiar setting, latex is being used less often because of allergic reactions that can result from the material. In some cases, the resulting reaction can be as minor as skin irritation known as dermatitis, but it can lead to anaphylaxis in more serious cases.

Latex allergies stem from the material’s proteins, a result of its origins.

What is latex?
Latex material is a natural rubber that is derived from the sap of the rubber tree. The sap is a polymer, which means it is created from the bonding of many single molecules known as monomers. It must be chemically treated within a short time of being tapped from the tree or else it will harden.

Once the sap is collected, it is turned from a sticky substance into the elastic material consumers are familiar with through a complex process that includes a step called vulcanization. This step, which involves heating the sap, was first coined by Charles Goodyear, whose surname is used for tire and rubber manufacturer Goodyear.

There are also synthetic rubber materials. However, these are not the same as natural latex.

“Latex material is a natural rubber that is derived from the sap of the rubber tree.”

What are the benefits of latex gloves?
One key characteristic of latex is it closely conforms to the hand to offer the best fit and feel. This gives users more dexterity while wearing the gloves. In the dental industry, for instance, dentists may need to handle small objects, such as tooth caps and tiny packets of tooth polish. If they are wearing gloves that loosely conform to their hands, they may have some trouble grabbing these items. Latex, on the other hand, can provide the dexterity and tactile sensitivity required for this and similar tasks.

Latex gloves are extremely flexible, which offers a measure of tear and puncture resistance. This feature is beneficial in applications where sharp objects are used. In the nursing field, for instance, employees use syringes and shears. Additionally, the durability can ensure health care professionals can maintain a safe barrier between themselves and pathogens and avoid passing pathogens from their own bodies to patients.

Although exam-grade latex is more familiar to most consumers, there are also industrial-grade latex gloves, which offer unique advantages for certain applications in auto repair, manufacturing and other tasks.

Latex gloves come in a variety of sizes and thicknesses. The extra thick latex gloves can be used longer and have less tactile sensitivity.

AMMEX imports and distributes top of the line wholesale latex gloves to fit your customer’s needs. Become a distributor today!

AMMEXKnow Your Glove Materials: Part II Latex
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The Right Gloves for the Job: Part III Food Service

The Right Gloves for the Job:  Part III Food Service – The food service industry has many of the same hygiene and contamination concerns of the food processing industry. Food service encompasses anywhere food is served. Sit-down restaurants, food trucks and college campus cafeterias are all part of the food service industry. In these and similar locations, food is prepared and served, and consumers often see workers having direct contact with the food.

Due to the nature of the food service industry – workers directly hand food to consumers – disposable glove usage in this sector is common. The U.S. Federal Drug Administration (FDA) requires all employees to wash their hands if they make contact with food. However, employers can only partially monitor their employees hand washing practices and hand washing may not always be enough to stop the spread of germs from hands to food.  Disposable food service gloves are useful in the food service industry because employers can visibly monitor their workers’ food safety practices, and consumers get peace of mind that there is a barrier between food service employees’ hands and their food.

“The FDA recommends the use of barrier protection such as disposable food service gloves to stop the spread of germs in the food service industry.”

 

One key facet of the food service industry is workers tend to switch between various light-duty tasks, and they need a disposable glove material that can accommodate their workflow. That is where polyethylene (PE), also known as poly, and polyvinyl chloride (PVC), also known as vinyl, gloves come in.

“Poly gloves have a looser fit so they are easier to don and doff.”

A looser fit at an affordable price with poly gloves
To avoid cross contamination, food service employees switch gloves often. If an employee were to go from preparing food to serving food, for instance, he or she would need to change gloves. Given the fast pace that can be common in this industry – during a lunch-hour rush, for example – these workers need a glove they can slip on and off quickly. For instance, sandwich shop workers use new gloves for each customer.

Poly gloves, which are latex free, fit this description. Disposable food service gloves are made from two sheets of polyethylene film. The sheets are seamed and sealed with heat to create the gloves.This glove material is thin and inexpensive. Considering employees switch gloves often, there is no need to use a more heavy-duty glove material such as nitrile or latex. Poly gloves are powder free. They do not conform to the hand as closely as other glove materials for easy donning and doffing. However, this feature also means less dexterity, but the gloves can be textured for better grip.

“There are antimicrobial versions of vinyl gloves, which stop the growth of microorganisms.“

More dexterity with vinyl gloves
A staple in the food processing industry, latex-free, powder-free vinyl disposable gloves are a staple in the food service industry. Like poly gloves, vinyl products are affordable and suitable for both food processing and food service applications. There are also antimicrobial vinyl gloves, which stop the growth of microorganisms. This feature is beneficial for preventing the spread of harmful bacteria that can contaminate the glove and other surfaces.

Vinyl gloves have two advantages compared to poly gloves: They conform more closely to the hand and provide better dexterity. If an employee needs to handle a small amount of garnish, for example, he or she can have an easier time grasping the correct amount with vinyl gloves.

Why not latex or nitrile?
As with any industry, end users and consumers can have latex allergies. Even if employees are able to wear the gloves without trouble, they could transfer latex proteins to the foods they handle, thereby causing a consumer to experience an allergic reaction. Nitrile is latex free, but its level of durability and price are not practice for gloves that are going to be changed often.

In the end, poly and vinyl gloves offer the value and ease food service workers need.  Become an AMMEX distributor today to add poly or vinyl disposable food service gloves to your product lineup.

AMMEXThe Right Gloves for the Job: Part III Food Service
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Latex Allergies: Importance of Latex-Free Gloves


As a growing number products are made from latex, latex allergies have become more prevalent, according to the Medscape. Consequently, many industries where latex products like disposable gloves are common, such as the health care industry, have made it their mission to create latex-free environments.

Fayne Frey, a dermatologist from West Nyack, New York, told the Tribune she does not permit latex in her office because of the increased prevalence of the allergy, which she has herself. Additionally, she noted the human body increasingly reacts to latex as an allergen the more it comes in contact with the material, putting health care professionals, salon workers and people who have had multiple surgeries at higher risk for reactions. There are two types of latex allergy: dermatitis and anaphylaxis. The former includes skin irritation. The latter can be life threatening and include a weak pulse and fainting. Repeated latex exposure can escalate a reaction from dermatitis to anaphylaxis.

There are is no cure for a latex allergy, and those who have it must simply avoid the material. For this reason, the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology recommends latex-free nitrile or polyvinyl chloride disposable gloves when appropriate as a viable substitute to latex products. Given many people don’t discover they have a latex allergy until their first reaction, end users should consider going with one of the aforementioned alternatives, when possible, to protect themselves and consumers.

 

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The Right Gloves for the Job: Part II Food Processing


Workers in the food processing industry should be required to wear appropriate disposable food processing gloves to protect consumers who eat the foods they handle.

Why You Need the Right Food Processing Gloves

Workers come in contact with a variety of foods, which can carry bacteria that can cause foodborne illnesses such as listeria and salmonella. There are also bacteria that are transferred from humans to food as a result of poor hygiene, such as E.coli, hepatitis A and staphylococcus. Disposable gloves can serve as a barrier between workers hands and these bacteria to lessen the chance of transmission to consumers.

Listeria, for example, is found in soil and water and can be present in uncooked meats and vegetables. Food processing plant workers who do not wear disposable gloves can contaminate their hands if they come into contact with a Listeria-infected food product, thereby leading to cross contamination of other foods they handle. This can result in widespread transmission of Listeria throughout the facility. Stop the spread of unwanted contaminants with the proper food processing gloves.

Additionally, it is not easy for employers to help monitor how well employees wash their hands. However, they can implement a glove program to prevent contamination and employee illnesses from being transmitted to food products. Not only does donning gloves aid in preventing the spread of foodborne illnesses, but it is also mandated by certain government regulations.

 “FDA food contact rules regarding disposable gloves are in place to protect workers in the food processing industry and consumers.  Antimicrobial vinyl gloves prevent the growth of microorganisms by disrupting cell walls.”

Regulations that mandate protective clothing 

The U.S. Federal Drug Administration (FDA) has several rules regarding the necessity of gloves for food contact. These rules are in place to protect workers in the food processing industry and consumers.

Here are some the FDA’s Food Code provisions regarding glove usage:

  • Workers must minimize bare hand and arm contact with exposed food that is not ready to eat.
  • Gloves or utensils such as tongs and spatulas must be used for contact with exposed, ready-to-eat foods except when washing fruits and vegetables.
  • Gloves can be used for a single task and must be discarded when workers switch to a new task, the gloves become soiled or the task is interrupted.

The FDA also requires all food processing employees wash their hands. This step can reduce the chance of contamination because it prevents pathogens and other hazardous materials from touching the inside of the glove – one of many best practices for donning gloves.

These regulations make it clear, food processing workers are required to don gloves in certain cases, but which glove is most common in this industry?

Polyvinyl chloride gloves in the food processing industry
Workers who handle food often wear vinyl gloves which are made from polyvinyl chloride (PVC), or simply vinyl, gloves. These are among the least expensive types of gloves and conform to the hand more loosely than nitrile or latex.

One key aspect of vinyl gloves is they are not as durable as other disposable glove materials. While this characteristic may be a detriment for gloves used in other industries where long-lasting puncture and tear resistance over time are important, vinyl gloves’ durability is suitable for food industry standards. This is particularly true in applications that require frequent glove changes.  Another option is blue vinyl gloves. The blue material is easier to find should a piece of the gloves become lost in a food product.

A recent advancement is the development of antimicrobial vinyl gloves that provide additional protection built into the glove material. These gloves prevent the growth of microorganisms by disrupting cell walls. Their antimicrobial and antifungal properties are mixed into the glove material rather than sprayed on so the additional protection cannot be rubbed or washed away.

If food processing employees are handling raw meat at one moment and then need to handle raw vegetables, they need to change their gloves, per the FDA regulations, to avoid cross contamination. In cases where workers need to change gloves often, low-cost vinyl gloves are a great food processing gloves option.

AMMEXThe Right Gloves for the Job: Part II Food Processing
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Growth for Global Disposable Glove Industry

A recent report by Allied Market Research has projected the global disposable glove industry is on track for large-scale growth through 2020. Let’s take a look at the forecasted future for wholesale disposable gloves.

The report forecasted the disposable glove industry will have a 6.2 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) between 2014 and 2020. The Allied Market Research report projected a 12.6 percent CAGR for powder-free gloves based on a market shift away from powdered gloves. Several sectors are predicted to be the catalysts for growth, including industrial and nitrile gloves.

Nitrile disposable gloves have become popular in the auto repair industry as a more chemical-resistant and allergy-free alternative to latex. These gloves protect the skin against absorbing harsh chemicals and solvents that are common to auto shops, the California Department of Health Services Occupational Health Branch reported.

The researchers also pointed to several pandemics as the driving forces behind expanded glove use. For example, the recent Ebola outbreak has prompted demand for protective clothing, and multiple sources report the World Health Organization has suggested health workers assisting patients with Ebola don nitrile exam gloves.

Despite current international health concerns, industrial disposable gloves are expected to have the fastest growth of all segments. The report cited that food industries are key drivers of growth in this area and elaborated on the potential expansion for vinyl (PVC) and polyethylene (PE) gloves, which are used in the food processing and service industries, respectively. Disposable vinyl gloves accounted for the second-largest market share – 28 percent – in 2013.

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Best Practices for Donning a Glove


When individuals put on a glove, they may not give any thought to how they go about this process, but there are specific steps wearers must take to ensure their gloves fit properly.

The key concern is creating a barrier between wearers’ skin and contaminants, pathogens or other hazardous materials. Nurses, for instance, need a barrier between themselves and patients’ blood, skin and contaminated surfaces. In the food service industry, gloves aid in keeping microscopic organisms from passing from staff hands to food stuffs and guard those same employees against health risks that come with handling uncooked meat, such as salmonella or other microbial foodborne illnesses.

However, if gloves are improperly donned, their ability to protect the users can be compromised. For this reason, wearers must take the appropriate steps when putting on gloves.

Here are the essential steps:

Finding the right size
Before gloves can be donned, the appropriate size must be found. Improperly sized gloves are more prone to tears, which can compromise the user’s safety. This applies to gloves that are too large or too small. A glove that is too tight can is more prone to punctures and tears and can reduce hand flexibility. A loose fit can lead to wrinkles, which can cause grip issues.

Users can determine if their gloves are too small by extending their fingers until straight. If the glove material appears to be stretching, the gloves are too small. Tears that occur where the thumb meets the palm also may indicate a glove is too small.

Putting gloves on
Once the proper size gloves are selected, wearers can put them on. The first step is to have a clean work area when donning gloves. Users don’t want to contaminate the gloves by placing them on a dirty surface. In an laboratory, for example, gloves should not be placed on a surface that has come into contact with harmful chemicals, as doing so can ultimately bring the wearer’s skin into contact with those chemicals.

In that same vein, all hand and wrist jewelry should be removed, and hands should be washed before gloves are worn. Dirty hands can contaminate the inside of the glove. This is because the hazardous materials and pathogens can be transferred from the unclean hands to the clean interior of the glove. In addition to protecting the wearer, this step can guard others who are going to come in contact with the wearer. Medical staff touch patients, so they don’t want pathogens or chemicals on their hands to contaminate the gloves.

Once work surfaces and hands are clean, users can begin to don the gloves. One key point is wearers should avoid touching the outside of the gloves as much as possible. First, the gloves can be placed on the prepared work surface. Then, the user puts a glove on his or her dominant hand by grabbing it with the other hand – remembering to only touch the inside of the glove – and slipping it over the dominant hand until it reaches finger level. Next, the wearer uses the gloved dominant hand to slip the other glove onto to the non-dominant hand.

Once both gloves are on, the users can touch the outside of the gloves to ensure a proper fit.

“Donning gloves properly is a quick best practice to implement.”

Addressing challenges of donning gloves
In some cases, users may find themselves unable to easily put their gloves on their hands. One key issue that can arise is the presence of moisture. If users do not have dry hands, they can experience difficulties donning their gloves.

One example comes from the automotive industry. If technicians are working in an auto shop on a particularly warm day, sweat may accumulate on their palms, and they may have trouble putting on gloves.

Powdered gloves may be the solution. Gloves that are powdered, with food grade corn starch, are designed to make it easier for users to don and doff. Users are cautioned to determine whether powdered gloves are appropriate for their application because the powder particles can decrease the integrity of certain automotive seals and contaminate some paints and finishes.

A powder-free alternative would be polymer-coated gloves which eliminates the need for powder and reduces surface tackiness.


These are the proper steps for doffing a glove.

Taking gloves off
There are also specific steps for removing gloves. In this case, users should never touch their skin with the outside of the glove to avoid contamination.

Using the dominant hand, users start by grabbing the outside of the glove on the non-dominant hand on the palm side near the cuff. Then, pull the glove off the non-dominant hand and place it in the gloved hand, balling it up. Next, slip two fingers under the cuff of the other glove and carefully peel it off the hand without touching the wrist, turning the remaining glove inside out as it is removed and in turn encasing the first glove. The gloves can then be disposed.

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