Posted on May 19, 2020 at 5:56 pm by West Sider

Magnolia Bakery on Columbus Avenue and 69th Street is instituting a new technology to try to reduce the risk of employees and customers contracting Covid-19. The company will use a special kind of UV light known as far-UVC light that’s supposedly effective in killing the virus and safe for humans, according to a release.

The company that makes the technology, Healthe, explained the three ways the technology will be used:

  • Cleanse Portal, a free-standing walkthrough arch that uses human-safe Far-UVC light to inactivate bacteria and viruses on skin, clothing and goods with a dosage requirement as low as 20 seconds. The Portal will be deployed at the entrance to Magnolia Bakery’s e-commerce production facility to sanitize employees and other personnel such as delivery drivers, as they enter and exit the facility.
  • Cleanse Downlight, a ceiling light that incorporates human-safe Far-UVC technology to inactivate bacteria and viruses in the air and on surfaces exposed to the light. Downlights will be installed in Magnolia Bakery’s e-commerce production facility and in the Bleecker St. and Columbus Ave. retail locations.
  • Cleanse Air-Sanitizing Troffer, which circulates room air through a HEPA-Carbon air filter and exposes it to UVA and UVC light capable of eliminating 99.99% of airborne pathogens in seconds. Troffers will be installed in Magnolia Bakery’s e-commerce production facility and in the Bleecker St. and Columbus Ave. retail locations.

Eater explains more about the technology.

Though these lights by no means guarantee protection from COVID-19, the bakery’s decision to install them stems from new technology that’s been developed by Columbia University’s Center for Radiological Research. While the research team is still testing how effective it is in killing the strain of the virus that causes COVID-19, the research center’s head David Brenner says the results are “encouraging,” according to a news bulletin on the University’s website last month.

Conventional UV light is known for killing viruses, but it’s also harmful to humans. The technology developed at Columbia, however, involves a wavelength of UV light called far-UVC, which in low doses can kill viruses and bacteria without endangering humans, the university’s research shows.

Magnolia is also using traditional methods of cleaning.

“The safety and health of our employees and customers is our top priority,” said Bobbie Lloyd, Chief Baking Officer for Magnolia Bakery. “We’ve instituted aggressive cleaning practices in all of the Magnolia Bakery locations that have remained open for takeout and delivery. With this new technology, we’re able to do even more to ensure the safety of our staff and customers. Healthe’s lights go above and beyond one-time disinfection, they continuously sanitize our locations while they’re in use, ensuring round-the-clock protection for our people.”

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