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Fine Hygiene Holding: Your health and hygiene expert

Filed on February 10, 2020

Fine Hygienic Holding (FHH), one of the world's leading wellness groups and manufacturer of hygienic paper products, was recently awarded the prestigious and highly coveted 'Sterilized Brand of the Decade Award' in 2020, by the Family Hygiene Institute (FHI). Khaleej Times in conversation with FHH CEO James Michael Lafferty.

Can you talk about Fine Hygiene Holding's business in the UAE and the GCC?

Fine Hygienic Holding (FHH) established operations in the UAE in 1989, and our facilities produce over 24,000 tons of tissue products including multi-purpose tissues, table napkins, and hand towel rolls. Additionally, we began pivoting further into the wellness industry in 2019 when we acquired a majority stake in the Arabian natural food and beverage brand, Nai Arabia Food Co which produces healthy, natural beverages and snacks.

What does the award 'Sterilized Brand of the Decade' mean to Fine?

Since its establishment, Fine has been a pioneer in the hygiene industry, and the wellbeing of our consumers has been at the heart of everything we do.

Fine is constantly innovating and improving with every step, which has gotten the group to where it is today and will continue to propel it forward in the future. Receiving the 'Sterilized Brand of the Decade' award from the Family Hygiene Institute (FHI), which falls under the auspices of the prestigious Medical Wellness Association (MWA), both of which promote and encourage proven global hygiene practices, especially for families, and this demonstrates not only our efforts over the last 10 years, but also our commitment to delivering products that are in class of their own.

In your opinion, how does the award further the brand value of Fine?

Fine offers products that are completely unique, made possible through the use of our patented sterilisation technology, Steripro, and our loyal customers know that every time they reach for a Fine product, they're getting not only the best possible quality, but the only sterilised tissue in the world. Now, all Fine packaging will proudly display the certified seal of 'Sterilized Brand of the Decade,' letting future customers know that Fine brand products are set to a higher standard than any other similar hygienic product on the market.

How can Fine tissues stop the spread of viruses?

Fine's patented sterilisation technology, SteriPro, ensures a fully sterile and hygienic production environment, guaranteeing that the first hand to touch the product is the consumer's, and reducing the risk of exposure to germs and viruses, which cause sickness. The patented technology utilises ultraviolet light in the form of vertical waves to destroy bacteria, viruses and other micro-organisms, producing a 99 per cent sanitised product, meaning that possibility of bacteria, germs and viruses, have already been neutralised before ever reaching the customer. Our goal is not to just provide relief to people who get sick; we aim to provide a product that prevents an infection in the first place.

What are the health and wellness products from Fine?

Fine produces a wide range of paper products, for both home and commercial use, including facial tissue, paper towels, toilet paper and napkins including our latest innovation, the new Fine     Rx, which is the only pharmaceutical-grade tissue in the market composed of sterilised three-ply tissues that are enriched with our unique blend of lotion and decongestant oils, to help consumers breathe free, and soothe irritation.

Fine also offers baby diapers developed to provide babies' comfort and wellbeing. Our diapers are soft, moisturised, highly absorbent, designed to prevent discomfort and irritation and feature our SmartLockTM technology which works to lock in wetness and prevent leaks. Additionally, Fine offers adult incontinence products featuring our DermaPro technology, which works to prevent skin irritation and rashes, particularly for wearers with limited mobility. Our adult pads and briefs are pH-balanced, moisturised, carefully sterilised, and feature odour-control agents, meeting the unique needs of our consumers.

Our commercial-focused division, Fine Solutions, provides businesses and institutions with the solutions they need to ensure a clean, hygienic work environment. Fine offers exclusive partner programmes that are designed to grant our customers exclusive value-driven programs that will bring commercial benefits, improve the overall hygiene level, and positively contribute to their growth through access to our strategic affiliations with leading institutions in the hygiene field such as the MWA.

Please detail the MWA's strategy on improving public wellness? And how does FHI fit into its brand strategy?

The MWA's strategy is based on collaborating and partnering with quality providers and organizations in order to provide dozens of expertise services in professional leadership and education for medical wellness, which is key to enhancing and developing the standards, guidelines and credentialing programmes and is reflected on companies and their integrity.  When the MWA recognizes companies with a medical wellness certificate, they provide them with recognition as an international provider, certifying that this certain manufacturer or company abides by the medical wellness standards. The certification means the public can identify and subsequently choose to use the services and products of top providers, ultimately raising wellness within communities over time.

FHI fits perfectly into the parameters of the MWA as a collection of health and medical wellness professionals with the express purpose to promote proven hygiene practices. FHI considers the leading hygiene brands regionally as well as globally and subjects their products and processes to intense analysis according to state-of-the-art criteria set down by experts in the field.

Tips to stay healthy and reduce the risk of virus infection

  • Wash and dry your hands regularly. To ensure real efficacy, make sure to wash your hands with proven anti-bacterial soap and then dry them with a fresh paper towel or tissue. Damp and used cloth towels are a breeding ground for germs.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth when in public places. Your eyes, nose and mouth are entry points for germs and viruses into your bodies. While a thorough handwashing should neutralise the threat of infection, you should still avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with your hands, especially when in a public place.
  • Use a sterilised tissue to cover your mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing. Make sure to cover your nose and mouth with a tissue, when coughing or sneezing. BUT: Ordinary tissues are often manufactured under unsanitary conditions; and can be laden with germs and viruses. Given tissue products touch your eyes, nose, mouth and other intimate parts of your body, it is important to choose your tissues wisely! Endeavour to use only sterilized tissue products. The word 'Sterilised' should appear prominently on the tissue package.
  • Wear a disinfectant face mask. Probably the single most important tool in the fight against infection is the surgical face mask, but most ordinary masks only filter dust and might prove ineffective. Instead, look for disinfectant or self-sterilising face masks that are specifically designed for infection prevention. Avoid touching the mask with your hands while it's on your face and remember to wash your hands after removing the mask from your face.
  • Choose your home and personal care products wisely. When buying products for personal or home care, make sure to choose reputable products that put emphasis on anti-bacterial properties, that are sterilised and promote health and hygiene as their key benefit. Disinfection is the best prevention of infection.
  • Practice good food safety when preparing and cooking raw meat. Use different chopping boards and knives for raw meats and cooked foods, wash your hands between handling raw food and cooked food, ensure meat is not undercooked prior to consumption, once cooked, place your prepared food on sterilised paper towels to reduce the risk of surface borne infections.
  • Avoid sharing eating utensils. While common in some cultures, the sharing of eating utensils, such as cups and cutlery can lead to the spread of germs and viruses. Therefore, it is recommended to avoid sharing these utensils with other people.
  • Actively strengthen your immunity to fight off pathogens. While all the above preventive tips are robust and effective, there is no 100 per cent guarantee that you or your loved ones may not be infected. There is no substitute for having a strong and healthy immune system, which can be achieved by: (a) proper nutrition rich in vitamins and minerals, (b) reducing smoking, (c) reducing alcohol consumption, (d) regular exercise and (e) adequate sleep.

This content comes from KT Engage, the brand marketing unit of Khaleej Times.