As live events return venue hygiene is going to be more of a priority than ever for events co-ordinators.

In the midst of a pandemic, keeping venues in line with hygiene guidelines has never been more crucial. This highlight on hygiene has seen new technologies develop and companies exploring solutions for the industry.

While much of the focus in media has been on how COVID-19 spreads through droplets in the air, the virus can also be spread on surfaces by touch.

The bedrock of venue hygiene currently is sanitising as quickly and effectively as possible. Many see the fogging machine as the solution to this need. During the process of fogging, an area is filled with mist made of a sanitising liquid. The aim of this is to offer complete cover of an entire venue, without risking any areas being missed.

“The only way to ensure a complete sanitation is with fogging, and our Electrosan Fogging System eradicates up to 99.9999% of viruses and bacteria with no impact or interruption to your daily work routine,” says Ian Hill, Sales and Marketing Manager for chemical producer Qualkem. While fogging machines seem to be extremely effective as a method of sanitising large spaces, the drawback of using them has previously been that the chemicals used require vacating the venue, so can’t be used as a sanitising method mid-event. However, this may no longer be the case. The use of an alcohol free hypochlorous solution which is harmless to humans allows fogging to be done without any interruption to the event. This solution is reportedly 100 times stronger than household bleach and lethal to all known pathogens, thus rendering it as effective as the more toxic chemicals that have been used previously.

Fogging does have its limitations in certain areas, for example underneath horizontal areas and whilst effective it doesn’t protect the area going forward. Another solution that is being offered for sanitising venues effectively is electrostatic spray technology. This ground-breaking technology charges the droplets of sanitiser as they exit the machine’s nozzle. The charges cause them to repel each other and spread out evenly over the surface, removing human error from the process of sanitising. “There’s a lot of fancy words that get used,” says facility management company MFB’s Managing Director Paul Ulett. “All this electrostatic process really means is it provides each molecule with a positive and a negative charge which then makes the particles go off and find something to cling to. That’s not new technology. It’s relatively straightforward. You can do that by just applying pressure.”

An effective electrostatic sprayer can put you £1,220 out of pocket, not including the sanitising solution, while a good fogging machine can cost upwards of £1,500, an outlay which can be tempered by renting from established venue hygiene firms. However, many re of the opinion technology comes second to good sanitising technique informed by expert knowledge of how the virus spreads – something specialists will readily offer.

Not taking proper precautions could cost more than money. According to commercial laundry and catering equipment distributer JLA Group, market-leading distributor of commercial laundry and catering equipment in the UK: “Venue hygiene isn’t just about walking the walk – businesses must also talk the talk and continually show their customers how they are making hygiene and infection control a priority. Four in five customers report that proof of businesses prioritising hygiene and customer safety would be reassuring.”

By cutting corners you risk your event brand’s reputation, losing consumer confidence, and most importantly: you risk people’s lives. Investing in experts to oversee events sanitisation is the best way to ensure your reputation doesn’t get taken to the cleaners.