Hygiene A-Z


  • Airborne

    Denotes a route for the transmission of infection through inhalation of bacteria or dusts.

  • Airborne droplet infection

    Denotes a route for the transmission of infection through inhalation of bacteria via the respiratory tract. Pathogens are spread into the surrounding area by sneezing, coughing as well as by exhalation. Typical illnesses that are transmitted by a droplet infection are measles, mumps, chickenpox and influenza.

  • Antibiotics

    Semi-synthetic, chemical or genetic compounds, which are produced using bacteria, fungi, lichen and other living organisms, and which are applied for killing and inhibiting the growth of infectious organisms. Antibiotics were originally extracted from naturally formed molecular metabolic products from bacteria or fungi.

  • Antiseptic

    Acts against pathogens, killing them off.


  • Bactericide

    Kills bacteria.


  • Caliciviruses

    The Caliciviridae family of viruses includes non-enveloped, single-strand RNA viruses. These viruses include the norovirus and hepatitis E virus.

  • Classification

    Categorisation or division of objects based on specific characteristics

  • Contact infection

    Denotes the transmission of pathogens by an already infected individual to a healthy individual through physical contact.

  • Contamination

    Denotes (undesired) pollution by microorganisms or harmful substances over areas, which can cause harm to health.

  • Cleaning

    Comprises the elimination of invisible organic material and visible dirt in order to prevent the proliferation of microorganisms on surfaces and skin.

  • Cleaning agent

    Consumables for cleaning objects and surfaces. Examples


  • Decontamination

    Acts against a contamination or an impurity. The impurity can entail health risks.

  • Disinfection

    Prophylactic measures for the killing or inactivation of pathogens (e.g. viruses, bacteria and fungi) to prevent infections. Disinfection renders both living and dead material harmless.

  • Disinfectant

    Consumables that are used for the elimination of impurities and disinfection of skin, surfaces and objects. The active agents contained in disinfectants include alcohols, ammonium compounds, amines and aldehydes.

  • Disinfection

    Denotes the targeted killing of pathogens on the skin or hands. Hand disinfection is much more effective against pathogens than merely cleaning the hands.

  • Disinfection plan

    Component of a hygiene plan, which defines the procedures and details for disinfection measures.

  • Disinfection wipes

    Cloths soaked in disinfectant for the disinfection of skin, surfaces and/or objects.

  • DIN EN

    A DIN standard is a voluntary standard formulated under the guidance of a working committee in the DIN German Institute for Standardisation, in which material and immaterial objects are standardised. DIN standards result after proposal by and through the initiative of interested groups (usually German business), whereby correspondence is established among all parties involved. Standards formulated on an international level are typically ISO standards or the European standards EN.


  • Eco-label

    The EU ecological mark recognised by all member states of the European union. Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland have also recognised the label introduced voluntarily in 1992 by an EU regulation. The eco-label helps for marking environmentally-friendly products and services.

  • EN 1499

    European standard for hygienic hand washing

  • EN 1500

    European standard for hygienic hand disinfection

  • EN 12791

    European standard for surgical hand disinfection

  • EN 14476 (Phase 2, Step 1)

    Quantitative suspension test with polio, adeno and norovirus; the basis for effectiveness evaluations of surface disinfectants

  • Enveloped viruses

    These viruses are surrounded by a membrane envelope. They can be destroyed by disinfectants, as enveloped viruses are often/comparably less active than non-enveloped viruses. Examples of enveloped viruses: influenza viruses, HBV, HCV and HIV viruses.

  • Environmental protection

    Comprises all measures that are undertaken to preserve and protect the environment. The aim is to conserve biodiversity and all living organisms based on a functional ecosystem.

  • Enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC)

    Denotes specific pathogenic strains of the intestinal bacteria Escherichia coli (E.coli). This can trigger bloody diarrhoea (enterohaemorrhagic colitis) (in humans).

  • ESBL

    Abbreviation for extended spectrum beta-lactamases. This involves bacterial enzymes, beta-lactamases, which an extended spectrum of beta-lactamase antibiotics can split.


  • Final disinfection

    After overcoming a disease or relocating a diseased person, a final disinfection is carried out in accordance with the German Protection against Infection Act. This comprises a scrub, room, air or instrument disinfection.

  • Food industry

    The food industry denotes the economic sector in which an essential part of agricultural products are processed for human nutrition.

  • Food safety

    Food safety (also: food hygiene) is a generic term for all measures meant to ensure that food is suitable for the end consumer to eat or drink – so that it will not harm or adversely effect health. Examples (Link to products in the category food safety/food contact)

  • Fungicide

    Denotes the killing of fungi (e.g. yeasts and moulds).


  • Green washroom

    A green washroom takes into account all production processes as well as the origin, production, use and disposal for all products used. Products for the green washroom consider the energy efficiency of the production system in which the are manufactured, the amount of natural resources used, the emissions caused and the packaging used for transport as well as the recycling options.


  • Hand hygiene

    Hand hygiene comprises systematic prophylaxis of the hands and skin for protection against dirt and pathogens. Besides hand cleaning and disinfection, it is an important element in the killing and prevention of microorganisms.

  • Hand cleaning

    Measure for removing dirt from the skin. Hand cleaning is the first, elementary step in hand hygiene.

  • Hazardous waste

    Hazardous waste represents waste subject to mandatory monitoring, which differs from conventional waste on account of the pollutants it contains or its consistency, and which must be disposed of separately.

  • Heavy-duty hand cleaning

    Cleaning of heavy soiling (e.g. tar, oil, paint, lacquer) primarily resulting in industry.

  • Hygiene

    Denotes the “science of disease prevention and the maintenance and promotion of health” (as defined by the German Society for Hygiene and Microbiology). It covers all precautions aiming to prevent a transmission of pathogens.


  • Immunity

    In medicine, immunity denotes a biological state in which an organism has developed sufficient mechanisms to fight against potentially harmful microorganisms.

  • Immune system

    Denotes the defence system in the human body against bacteria, viruses, or pathogens.

  • Infection

    Denotes the colonisation and growth of potentially harmful microorganisms (e.g. bacteria, viruses etc.) in another organism, such as humans.

  • Incontinence

    Inability to retain urine or stools

  • Instrument disinfection

    Comprises cleaning and prevention measures against the contamination of instruments for medical use.

  • ISO standard

    The International Organization for Standardization – in short ISO – is the international association of standardisation organisations and as such draws up international standards in all areas

  • ISO 9001

    EN ISO 9001 defines the requirements for a quality management system (QM system), which an organisation must comply with in order to be able to provide products and services, which fulfil customer expectations as well as any official requirements.

  • ISO 14001

    The international environmental management standard ISO 14001 defines internationally recognised requirements for an environmental management system and is part of a family of standards. This family of standards contains numerous further standards for various areas of environmental management, including life cycle assessments, environmental performance indicators and appraisal. It can be applied to both manufacturing companies as well as companies providing services.

  • ISO 22716

    ISO 22716:2007 is the preferred standard for the cosmetics industry within the EU and ensures compliance with the laws and regulations of the European Commission with directives for the production, monitoring, storage and shipping of cosmetic products. The primary aim of this standard is to increase the safety of the end product and protect consumers.


  • Levurocidal

    Killing all yeasts

  • Limited virucidal

    Denotes the specific inactivation of (primarily/predominantly enveloped) viruses.


  • Moulds

    Comprise an accumulation of various types of fungi, which proliferate on an organic material (e.g. foods), forming tiny fungal threads (hyphae).

  • MRSA

    Abbreviation for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. This bacterium can cause pneumonia or wound infections and is resistant to many antibiotics.


  • Noroviruses

    The noroviruses are highly infectious viruses that are responsible for gastrointestinal inflammation (gastroenteritis).


  • Pathogens

    Comprise all microorganisms that can cause harmful health developments in other organisms. Pathogens can be bacteria, algae, viruses as well as fungi, amongst many others.

  • Podology

    Podology denotes alternative medicine for the foot.

  • Prevention

    Prophylaxis, avoidance.

  • Protective gloves

    Special gloves (as part of personal protective equipment) in order to provide protection against hazards and the transmission of bacteria.


  • Quality control

    Denotes the objective analysis of the extent to which a product corresponds to the required/defined standards.


  • Recycling

    Reuse of raw materials already used/utilised after treatment.

  • Routine

    Denotes an acquired ability to perform a certain activity very quickly and reliably through prolonged practice.


  • Salmonella

    These pathogenic intestinal bacteria are one of diverse causes of food poisoning. Salmonella are rod-shaped bacteria, which can cause different diseases in humans and animals. In most cases, they are the main cause of food poisoning and/or diarrhoea.

  • Staphylococcus

    Gram-positive bacteria, which form clusters (cocci) in a culture. They are the most important cause of septic surface infections and can frequently be the cause of food poisoning, for example.

  • Sterile

    Absence of reproducible germs such as microorganisms and viruses

  • Sterilisation

    Denotes a procedure for the removal or elimination of living microorganisms (e.g. viruses, fungi and bacteria), as well as in their dormant stages (e.g. spores).

  • Surface disinfection

    Denotes the disinfection of surfaces and objects.

  • Skin care

    Skin care is an essential element of personal body care in order to retain and improve the skin’s protective barriers.

  • Skin protection

    Comprises all measures that are undertaken to protect skin subject to high external stress – in particular the hands – so as to prevent penetration by pollutants and irritants.


  • Tough soils

    Stubborn soiling (e.g. oil, paint, lacquer).


  • Virucidal

    Denotes the inactivation/disabling of enveloped and non-enveloped viruses.

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