Sustainable hand drying

Cotton towels protect the environment

CWS cotton towels do not only dry hands. The environment also benefits from the multipart product. The rolls get washed after using with the highest hygiene standards and thus dry in the course of their lives countless hands.

An approx. 35 m long cotton towel roll:

  • Provides approx. 110 towel portions per roll
  • Can be washed up to 100 times
  • Can thereby be used approx. 11,000 times for drying hands.
Cotton towels for the environment

A cotton towel roll replaces up to 22,000 paper towels over the course of its lifecycle.1 Approx. 90% of our old rolls are recycled as raw material for cleaning rags and cleaning mops.

Environmental study praises cotton towel rolls

Everyone can help protect the environment, everywhere – even in washrooms: by using cotton towel rolls instead of paper. This was recently confirmed by a scientific study2 commissioned by the Textile Service Trade Association (WIRTEX) and the European Textile Service Association (ETSA).

Cotton towel rolls produce an impressive 95.4% less waste compared to recycled paper. And in contrast to virgin paper, it is 95% less.

comparison waste paper and cotton towels
comparison energy paper and cotton towels

Drying hands with cotton towels consumes 48% less energy compared with virgin paper and 40% less energy compared with recycled paper.

In terms of the greenhouse effect too, cotton cuts a finer figure: Its global warming potential is 43% lower than that of recycled paper and 29% lower than that of virgin paper.

comparison global warming paper and cotton towels
additional resulty study environment

Other factors also compared included air pollution, summer smog formation, water consumption and the acidification and overfertilisation of soils are all less pronounced compared to paper.

Altogether, the cotton towel system achieved better environmental values than recycled paper in seven out of eight categories and better values than virgin paper in six out of eight categories. The study covered the entire service lives of the three hand drying materials from the production of resources to the production of the finished items, their use and reuse as well as eventual recycling.

The Blue Angel crowns our certificates

Since 2011, all dispenser lines of our CWS cotton towel systems have been distinguished with the renowned Blue Angel ecolabel3 according to RAL-UZ 77. This is because CWS cotton towel systems conserve natural resources, reduce waste and have a lower impact on our water resources.

blue angel logo
confidence in textiles logo

CWS cotton towel rolls are also certified according to Oeko-Tex® Standard 100 and classified in the product class 2 (products with skin contact). The evaluation of the Oeko-Tex® certificate implies that the more intensive the product’s skin contact is, the stricter the requirements it must fulfil with regards to the textiles’ human ecological quality.

[1] The use of 2 standard paper towels of medium type and quality is assumed per cotton towel portion, based on approx. 100 wash cycles of one “CWS slim role”, which provides about 110 portions per clean roll.
[2] Source: LCA of mechanical hand-drying systems: A comparison of cotton and paper towels, thinkstep 2016.
[3] Blue Angel: Applies to the subsidiaries CWS-boco Deutschland GmbH, CWS-boco BeLux N.V., CWS Nederland B.V. , CWS-boco Suisse SA, CWS-boco Italia S.p.A., CWS-boco Ireland Ltd.

Download of the study