A Brief Introduction to the World of Bacteria
Water has an important role in our lives. Due to its unique physical and chemical properties, water is a valuable “product eyen that cannot be exchanged for anything else. However, water is also the source of all life and there are many problems and side effects associated with the water used. Common problems with water can be listed as follows: Odor formation – Biofilm (slime formation, blockage of pipes) – Excessive microbial growth (algae, bacteria…)
Most of these problems are caused or related to microorganisms or microbes. For many years people have used disinfectants (biocides) to kill all germs to solve the problems they cause. However, in the past years it has become clear that the overuse of biocides and disinfectants leads to microbial resistance leading to extremely difficult to kill superbacteria. Biocides and disinfectants are therefore very dangerous and harmful to the environment.
For over 25 years, Prowill has specialized in the development of sustainable cleaning and hygiene solutions where probiotics are an important component. Instead of trying to kill nature, we use nature to solve problems.
Given the great importance of a good natural microbial balance in water, Prowill has developed a range of probiotic products to solve water-related problems in a natural way. This document provides an overview of what Prowill has to offer to the water world. After reading this document, we will be happy to answer any questions you may have.
We look forward to serving you!
A microorganism or germ is too small an organism to be seen with the naked eye. It can become visible only when there are many. The most important types of microbes are viruses, bacteria, molds, yeasts and algae. Bacteria are the most common germs and are about 1 micrometer (μm) in size, 1 millimeter divided into 1000 parts!
Microorganisms are found everywhere in nature. They are found in the skin, in our digestive system, in the soil, in water and in the air. The majority of microorganisms are useful and even necessary for the survival of humans, animals and the environment.
Unfortunately, there are also a number of dangerous or “unwanted” microorganisms. They may cause disease in plants, humans or animals; produces unpleasant odors or causes food spoilage and contamination. These ‘bad germs’
Although they are only a small fraction of total microorganisms, they give a bad reputation to microbes.
Wherever they are (soil, air, water, humans, animals, plants), microbes tend to organize themselves into communities: the microbial community or the microflora.
Communities can be very diverse and complex. Each microbial member of the community plays a role and contributes to the maintenance of this community. Together all microbes have one purpose: to survive as long as possible.
When such a microbial community or microflora adheres to a solid surface (material, skin, teeth, tubes, leaves …) it is called a biofilm. Very common examples of biofilms are accumulation in, for example, showers and floors, or in water pipes and pumps. Often biofilms have negative consequences in humans and animals because they cause numerous diseases that cause visual pollution, odors and germs.
To survive, germs need food and water just as we do. Food can be readily found in abundant organic matter (such as plant material, slijm or dough / dough in the process) that is present in the water. Microbes are drunk through moisture or water absorption, which is of course abundant in water systems. Processing of food and moisture with microbes is called metabolism, and often this involves the excretion of odorous gases, which we experience as bad odors. At worst, some microbes may produce substances that cause disease or allergic reactions in animals, humans or plants.
It is important to create a healthy microflora that does not produce any dangerous or unpleasant substances in water to achieve good hygiene and to prevent the undesirable effects of microbes. This can be achieved by Prowill’s probiotic water treatment.
Chemical cleaning and disinfection For years, people believe that all microorganisms are bad or dangerous and need to be destroyed. For this purpose, chemical products have been developed to kill microorganisms called biocides. These biocides contain microbicides and can be used as such or processed into other products (eg, disinfecting soap). The ultimate goal of all biocide products is to prevent microbial growth and thus to have none of the negative effects of microbes. In water systems, a common biocide is chlorine.
Initially, the use of biocides seemed very effective and water could be kept away from microbial growth and biofilm formation. However, shortly after the discovery of biocides, microorganisms found ways to protect themselves against these so-called resistance. This means that each year, the microbes know better how to survive a biocide attack. As a result, the effectiveness of biocidal products means that they need to be applied at higher concentrations and more frequently to maintain the same effect. Nowadays, the necessary bioconcentration concentrations are so high that working with these chemicals becomes very dangerous. It also results in a great cost and technical equipment (corrosion) and environmental damage.
On top of that, most water systems suffer from some smart germ strategies for survival. One of the strategies to defend themselves against the attack of chemicals is the formation of very stubborn biofilms. These biofilms have extremely complex structures and compositions. Can be considered a shelter for germs. Biofilms are often inoculated against biocides and continue to grow over time. In most water systems, this can cause major problems such as clogging of pipes, pumps, filters and the formation of intense odors. Furthermore, the performance of the biofilm-infested technical installation is much lower.
The chemicals used in these dangerous chemical biocides are harmful to the health of humans, animals and plants. For example, the US Food and Drug Agency (FDA) has launched a research into the safety of disinfecting soaps *. In addition to safety, the active components of biocides strongly pollute the environment because they are biodegradable and persist for a long time, thus stimulating resistance between microorganisms in nature.
In recent years, many dangerous biocide disadvantages have been discovered. The discovery of probiotic hygiene, based entirely on natural ingredients, provides a sustainable solution to the resistance and safety problems associated with biocides.