Diversey Hygiene (Thailand) and the Executive Housekeeper Association of Thailand (EHAT) have joined forces to advance better sustainable practices in Thailand’s hotel sector.

The “Innovation & Sustainability For Hospitality” conference featured esteemed keynote speakers including Mr. Karel Van Gorp, Diversey Vice President of Marketing for Emerging Markets and Global VP of Consumer Brands; Mr. Vikas Mittal, Managing Director for Thailand and Indochina at Diversey Hygiene Thailand; and Dr. Stefan Phang, Diversey Global Director of Sustainability & Creating Shared Value.

Many relatively harmful chemicals from hotel and resort wastewater pipes are still being deposited in the surrounding ecosystems. Detergents that are not biodegradable or non-environmentally friendly such as alkylphenol ethoxylates (APEOs) are still used in many of Thailand’s hotels. APEOs (CAS 9016-45-9) is an endocrine-disruptor, and it interferes with estrogen levels in aquatic settings receiving wastewater. It has been banned in the European Union and several other countries around the globe.

“If it’s not good for Amsterdam, why is it good for Bangkok? If it’s not good for Geneva, it shouldn’t be good for Krabi or anywhere,” said Dr Stefan Phang.

The objective for sustainable cleaning, said Diversey speakers, was not to just be compliant with regulations in mature markets such as the EU, USA, Australia and Japan, but to go further to help the environment and gain competitive advantage.

“The way ahead for Thailand’s hotel housekeeping sector is to embrace green products and international environmental certifications, use less plastic, and adopt automation and digitisation for more accurate measurements. We only have one world and we have to do our share,” said Karel Van Gorp, Solenis’s Vice President of Marketing for Emerging Markets, Diversey.

EHAT and Diversey explained that the hotel housekeeping support sector is full of innovation, such as cleaning without chemicals using diamond dust.

Mr Vikas Mittal highlighted the collaborative spirit driving advancements in sustainability in the hospitality sector in Thailand. “Diversey Thailand has been a trusted partner of many global hotel brands for many years. This collaboration enables us to share insights on green chemical adoption and biodegradable packaging, driving progress in the industry,” said Vikas.

“Also, when hotels have implemented more sustainable measures, hotels can then achieve international sustainability certifications such as Green Globe, Green Key, EarthCheck, and the Hospitality Sustainability Basics global standards. These are increasingly demanded by tour operators in EU and other affluent source markets that send tourists to Thailand’s hotels,” Vikas added.

Supported by EHAT, Diversey has launched additional technical innovations that have a community-support element as well as an environmental one. For example, Diversey is encouraging the recycling of hotel soaps, with its Soap For Hope initiative. It is also converting end-of-life hotel linens into cloth bags, dolls and face masks in its Linens For Life program.

Other innovations include CoffeeBriques, which recycles spent coffee grounds into coffee charcoal briquettes for cooking fuel. In addition, the company has technology to transform plastic waste into construction materials as a substitute for stone, sand, or gravel, such as for badminton courts and roads, under its PlasticShreds initiative.

“These initiatives not only help hotels reduce landfill waste but also enable vulnerable communities to earn a modest but sustainable income,” Phang explained. He demonstrated these projects to EHAT members at the 27 April 2024 event.

Ms Ampika Methip, President of the Executive Housekeeper Association of Thailand told the meeting: “We need hotels to use greener products and have better waste management by reducing, reusing and recycling and doing things like banning single use plastic.”

by Diversey - A Solenis Company