COVID/Corona: Tissue is suddenly VERY POPULAR

20 May 2021

Toilet paper and paper hand towels are suddenly in the news more than I have ever seen in my 43 years of working with the paper industry. The culprit, of course, is the nasty corona virus which has made millions of people sick with COVID-19 and caused around 600,000 deaths worldwide so far, as of 16 July 2020. Sadly, the death toll will certainly be going higher.

Besides the tragic health consequences, COVID has also brought much of the global economy to a screeching halt, leading to hardship in terms of job and income losses as well. The gigantic cost to the world in terms of depression, desperation and suffering is truly impossible to calculate.

COVID has also led to enormously changed behavior patterns for the world’s population, as social distancing is being suggested or even demanded by governments to stop the spread of this extremely-contagious disease. Nobody is flying, and hardly driving, and staying and working at home. The restaurant business is hurting greatly, and millions of people who work in those places have seen their jobs disappear.

Toilet paper shortages will not be a long-term problem
For reasons that are somewhat hard to understand, panic buying and stocking up on toilet paper began occurring shortly after the world realized that corona virus was not simply going to stay inside the boarders of China. As it spread around the world, toilet paper (and paper towels too in some places) began disappearing off the shelves at stores much faster than it could be restocked. Without trying to explain why this was happening, I think it is very safe to say that the tissue industry will keep running full speed and keep supplying the world with tissue paper products that it can’t live without.

A lot of people are now working from home. But Tissue Makers don’t have that comfortable option. They are going to work at tissue mills that most often are running 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.

Hand hygiene is the most important defense against corona spreading
Of course I am no expert in health matters. I am just a paper engineer who somehow became a journalist. But in reading and watching videos about the spread of corona virus, it seems to be very certain that the main route of transmission of this poison from one person to another is VIA OUR VERY OWN HANDS!

The average person touches their face something like 16 times – per hour! Some may do so a bit less, and others up to 100 times an hour. And anytime you touch your mouth, nose of eyes, you are potentially introducing this virus into your body.

The experts are saying that KEEPING YOUR HANDS CLEAN and AWAY FROM YOUR FACE is the best way to avoid getting corona virus in your body, and avoid getting Covid-19.

And . . . of course the best way to PROPERLY clean your hands is with soap and water for 20 seconds or more and then THOROUGHLY DRYING THEM WITH PAPER HAND TOWELS. Paper towels are much better than hot-air dryers, which are proven to blow around lots of material, including bacteria and viruses. And they must be better than textiles, which are reused numerous times, which is dangerous anytime but now more than ever with the super-dangerous and super-contagious corona virus spreading around the world.

So please try to stay safe by:

1.   Keeping a distance from other people
2.   Washing your hands and thoroughly drying them with paper towels
3.   Not touching your face.

If you are a tissue maker, I think you can feel extra proud about how many people want our products and what we are doing to keep the world clean.

And, if you’re not a tissue maker, you might want to appreciate the skilled professionals who make tissue paper products, and the advanced technology and science behind them, just a little bit more than you did before the crisis!

By Hugh O’Brian