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Solution for film and pot preservation in line with regulatory requirements

The paints and coatings industry is currently under regulatory pressure as a result of the Biocides Regulation. Many of the active ingredients that have been in use and approved to date have already disappeared or may soon disappear from the market. So how should manufacturers protect their paints and coatings from microbial infestation in the future?

Since March 2023, Alfred Kochen has had a new exclusive partner at its side in the form of Heraeus Precious Metals of Hanau, Germany, which has matured an innovative technology into series production and brought it to market with its AGXX antimicrobial catalyst system. Alfred Kochen is authorized to exclusively distribute AGXX in the DACH region in the areas of paint and varnish as well as PA and PU.

What is this AGXX and what can it do?

AGXX is a new antimicrobial technology based on redox reactions and microelectric field effects. The interaction of two precious metals – silver and ruthenium – triggers a catalytic reaction that produces reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the presence of water and oxygen, which react with and kill microorganisms.

In addition, the microelectric field present affects important functions of the cell membrane and accelerates the killing of microorganisms.

The technology demonstrates antimicrobial activity against more than 130 microorganisms, including bacteria, viruses, algae and fungi.

Since the active ingredient, reactive oxygen species (ROS), is generated in situ by a catalytic system, the antimicrobial effect is theoretically infinite as long as the reactants oxygen and water are accessible to the system.

The AGXX hybrid particles (Al2O3 or TiO2 as carrier material) are thermally very stable and can be incorporated into various materials even at higher temperatures. The particles are also stable against chemical influences.

And how is it different from other antimicrobial technologies?

Unlike other antimicrobial technologies, the mechanism of action does not rely on the release of metal ions or harmful compounds into the environment and provides long-lasting protection, e.g. as a pot and film preservative.

Due to its mechanism of action, AGXX belongs to the free radical class of active ingredients, which are currently still in the ECHA approval process. However, its use is already permitted in various applications under Article 93 of the Biocidal Products Regulation (BPR).

What exactly is the Biocide Regulation and what does it mean for the paint industry?

Until the mid-1990s, biocides could be marketed without an approval process. The Biocides Regulation, which came into force in 2012, introduced new rules and regulations for the use of biocides in Europe. The regulation is intended to improve the protection of humans and the environment by restricting the use of biocides and tightening the approval procedures for these substances.

The regulation specifies exactly what process a new antimicrobial technology must go through before it can be approved. In addition, the Biocides Regulation also stipulated that all antimicrobial technologies already available on the market at that time must undergo a review under the new rules.

This is a major challenge, especially for film and pot preservation. To date, after more than ten years of evaluation, only 18% of the 61 pot preservatives have been approved, 31% have been eliminated, and the remaining 51% are still awaiting review. Things don’t look much better for film preservatives.

Has it already been proven that AGXX works?

The technology has already been successfully used in pot preservation trials, demonstrating a long-lasting antimicrobial effect. For this purpose, independent laboratories have carried out tests according to IBRG-P16. In the process, AGXX-equipped color samples were inoculated with test strains on a weekly basis. The interior paints treated in this way showed excellent antimicrobial activity, so that no microbial growth was detectable on the paints, even after several weeks or inoculations.

To demonstrate the functionality of the product as a film preservative, tests were performed according to ISO 22196 against S. aureus and E. coli. For this purpose, AGXX was incorporated into a biocide-free interior paint and a biocide-free polyurethane varnish.

The interior paint showed antimicrobial activity against both bacterial strains, the polyurethane varnish showed very good activity against the S. aureus strains and lower antimicrobial activity against the E. coli strains.

Thus, paints and varnishes can be equipped with pot and film preservation without leaching of environmentally harmful substances.

Curious now?

Are you curious to learn more about this technology? Then feel free to contact the Alfred Kochen sales team. We are at your disposal and look forward to your call or mail, then we can coordinate the next steps in a personal conversation:

Kim Paetzold (Sales/ Sales Manager)

+49 40 35 51 51 – 29


Christoph Rausch (Sales/ Sales Manager)

+49 49 35 51 51 – 21


Markus Lehmann (Authorized Signatory/ Sales Director)

+49 49 35 51 51 – 28


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