The convention promoted by Assofornitori and Assosistema associations in the Tuscan racetrack was a complete sold out with the attendance of sector operators and local administrators.
The triumph of Made in Italy did not leave neither Giotto nor the Grand Prix motorcycles behind. A great result due to the prestige of the two associations’ battle in favour of the recyclable and against the disposable. Great results expressed by scientific studies, surveys and best solutions put into practice by companies and the local administrative institutions
Mugello racetrack leads to textile treasures
“Personally, I am proud to be born in the hometown of Giotto”. The phrase was pronounced by Marco Chiari, a young manager of Chi-Ma that has undoubtedly brought prestige to the great “school” of Florence laundry. The words uttered during the “Take the right track, you need fabrics for better future!” (Prendi la pista giusta, per un futuro migliore ci vuole stoffa!), a convention organized in the Mugello racetrack by Assofornitori and Assosistema, efficiently identified the reasons and aims of this initiative born around a simple and winning idea: founding the basis for the future of the global, untouchable leaders considering the unique, artistic and artisan Italian tradition of the driving textile sector. It has always been strictly connected to the destiny of industrial laundries that has worked on textile maintenance and its sanitization. The necessary condition for it to happen is the promotion and spread of recyclable textile to the detriment of the disposable in the crucial sectors, tourism and health care: “Use & Reuse”, as the title of the campaign itself suggests, has become a business card of the Assosistema association.
This initial quotation sees Vicchio, the hometown of Giotto and the Chiari family that has been leading the economy of the entire territory for three generations, condensate the attractive and luminous appeal of the event attended by hundreds of both sector operators and institutional representatives. Their meeting took place in an extraordinarily fascinating location, a press release room at the Mugello racetrack, where you could hear the motorcycles trial runs echo. The satisfaction of the companies sponsoring the initiative was clearly visible: Christeyns, Gastaldi, Jensen, Kannegiesser, Masa, Montanari, Nuova Folati, Parotex and Telerie Gloria.
“The rumbling of the motorcycles we hear sounds nice and pleasurable as it reminds us of manual work, high engineering, Italy that is” says Mauro Marchetti, the President of Assosistema, during the introduction stage. He continues: “It is a perfect soundtrack that accompanies our story inspired by successes and perspectives of national laundry businesses that have currently registered a total annual turnover of 4.200 million euro, guaranteeing work to 35 thousand workers, 62% of which are women”.
Marchetti takes the cue from the figures and highlights the prestige of the association he represents. It requested a research whose fresh results brought us all here to Mugello. It was carried out by Isnart – National Institute of Tourist Research (istituto nazionale delle ricerche turistiche) – on the appreciation of textile sanitizing and rental services (we are going to treat this topic in detail in the following article).“The survey, fundamentally supported by Assofornitori, has fully expressed the Assosistema policy over the last decade – the President says – aiming at a total transparency of thoughts and methods. It is the same basis on which we can tell the community and not only our sector, why we should say yes to textile and no to paper. As a consequence, we are dealing with business culture thanks to which laundries today protect and sanitize million linen pieces a day. Each one entirely traceable in its path: from withdrawal to delivery, going trough washing operations to drying and finally, stocking”.
The role of the Assofornitori members has definitely been irreplaceable. As the association’s name reveals, the companies supply machines, products and services to laundries enabling them to treat and sanitize textile destined to the highest number of uses possible. Matteo Gerosa, the Vice President of Assofornitori underlines it at Mugello. “Within a highly evolved market, our companies – Gerosa remembers – are called to “supply” laundries not only with machines and technology but also with a precious and irreplaceable availability to discuss, identify and share objectives”.
“Among the objectives – Gerosa continues – one of the main ones consists of promoting textile which derives from the decrease in quality services offered by the tourist sector due to the tendency of using disposable products. Not only are they less comfortable, but first of all, less safe due to fewer controls they undergo. Whereas the use of fabrics will definitely pay back in terms of environment protection, less pollution, occupation and the growing esteem of Made in Italy products”.
The words recall the unassailable figures expressed by the research carried by Ambiente Italia. It compared the use of textile and the disposable in the same contexts. The results, in favour of the first one, show: -53% of global warming, -45% of smog, -95% of water eutrophication, -28% land acidification and much smaller volumes of produced waste.
The discussion panel focused on these trends and data, and involved the participation of sector operators and institutional representatives. The final part of the first half of the convention was interestingly closed by Luigi Monfredi, the Vice Editor in Chief of the TG1 news. Another relevant intervention was carried out by Federico Ignesti, the major of Scarperia and Sanpiero, a town in Tuscany that in 2015 introduced the practice of Ta.Ri. tax reduction for those commercial structures that use textile instead of the disposable products. Other observations were expressed by administrators: Monia Faltoni, the budget council member from Prato, a well-known district that aims at continuous recycling of waste; Filippo Giovannini, the major of Savignano sul Rubicone, Forlì-Cesena province, and Fabrizio Trivella, a laundry sector businessman and the major of Talamona, Sondrio province.
Made in Italy visions that naturally land on the great Tuscany cuisine deliciously prepared for the attendees by a five-star chef, Paolo Gramaglia.
Sanitizing enterprises, crucial partners of hospitality businesses
The results of the research by Isnart carried out for Assosistema on the satisfaction level relevant to laundry services for hotels, tourist resorts and restaurants were presented during the convention in Mugello. The report concerned more than 70% of Italian structures
The afternoon session at the convention “Take the right track, you need fabrics for better future!”(Prendi la pista giusta. Per un futuro migliore ci vuole stoffa!) was started by presenting the results relative to a survey “Satisfaction deriving from textile sanitizing, delivery, withdrawal and rental services” that Assosistema requested from Istituto di Ricerche within the project aiming at the re-positioning of the integrated hotel services. Elena Di Raco, Isnart Research Responsible overviewed the most interesting points arising from the survey carried out in 2016 through telephone calls to hospitality institutions (hotels and tourist resorts) and to 1000 restaurants.
“Considering the outsourced services by tourist businesses, sanitizing takes a central role: outsourcing this service is quite a common practice. 70,9% of hotels and restaurants outsource the service. Whereas 27,9% of hotels, 44,7% of tourist resorts and 22,7% of restaurants (28,9% of hotels and restaurants on average) do not rely on the outsourced services but sanitize linen internally – said Elena Di Raco. – Over the last 5 years, the sanitizing trend by hotels and restaurants has turned out to be rather stable, remaining at 80% of tourist businesses in general. It however reveals to be referred to as growing by 12,3% of hotels and restaurants”.
“7,7% of the total tourist businesses – Elena Di Raco continues – declares a decline in outsourcing, particularly among tourist resorts (15,8%) that reveal to manage such services internally. In case of the companies that indicate the decline in the outsourced sanitization service, the most common reasons refer to the economic crisis and to the decrease in the clients number that allow for a cheaper internal management of the service”.
As far as the offered supplies are concerned, the sanitizing businesses put to the disposal of hotels and restaurants the supply of bedsheets and bed linen (87,3%), towels (78,4%), tablecloths (70,9%) and cotton napkins (67,4%), bathroom linen (30,7%) or other accessories (23,4%). The sanitizing of work uniforms (17,5%), housekeeping (16,5%) or mattresses cleaning (15%) turn out to be a more specialised and less common offer.
Tourist businesses’ requests from the sanitizing businesses have the characteristics that almost seal a trust pact: a guarantee of the daily withdrawal on time (42,9%), flexibility in service performance (41,1%) and the research for customized solutions (23%). 16,6% of businesses request the on-line management of the service (20,6% of tourist resorts). Among other services there are housekeeping (9,8%), bathroom accessories supply (5,4%) and wardrobe (3,7%).
”A consolidated loyalty process is evolving also towards the online service management as automation and acceleration tool – Di Raco continued. – The satisfaction level expressed by hospitality businesses relative to sanitizing services equals 8,3 (from 1 to 10), in particular: 9 operators out of 10 evaluated it more than 7. The most satisfying type of a service reveals to be the sanitizing services in general (8,5) and transport (8,4) with evaluation expressed by both hotels and restaurants. Tourist resorts are still distinguished by very high evaluation relative to wardrobe (9,2) and sanitizing (9,1)”.
Over the last years we have been witnessing textile being replaced by paper. Such dynamics concerns more than 1 business out of 5 (21,1% of hospitality businesses). It is most common in tourist resorts (30,9%) and restaurants (23,7%) more than in hotels (19,7%). Among the hospitality structures, the tourist residences are the most orientated ones towards the use of paper (22%). “Generally speaking, the choice is due to the practical use and savings rather than the lack of satisfaction as far as textile supplies and use go. It is about the economical advantage and the comfort of use”, Di Raco concluded. The results of Isnart survey have been the starting point of the discussion panel with the participation of Barbara Casillo, the Director of Confindustria Alberghi, Aldo Cursano, the President of Fipe Toscana and Fulvio Farnesi, the President of Federconsumatori Toscana.
“Over the last years, the hospitality sector in Italy has faced a very strong crisis – said Barbara Casillo, the Director of Confindustria Alberghi – that is going to the end today thanks to foreign visitors. Tourists’ needs are changing towards an “experience” approach through which a hotel client appreciates anything that evokes emotions. Textile is surely one of the aspects that gives further value to such a need and that contributes to the image of a hospitality structure. Textile is a physiological element and an integral part of a productive process by companies that care about offering quality products exclusively.”
“Style is an identifying element of our country – Aldo Cursano, the President of Fipe Toscana added- the table and the tablecloth make a difference. We need to preserve the value of our model. To do that, it is not enough to rely on the work of private individuals but we need to share it with institutions. Therefore, we are happy to welcome elements like rewarding systems or tax exemption.”
“The sustainability should be a collective choice as we all are consumers as well –Fulvio Farnesi, the President of Federconsumatori Toscana commented – and the quality should be seen as a competition for businesses and companies. The traceability of the production chain through controls and quality monitoring constitutes a valid part for everybody and each one of us should demand it while using a product or a service”.
At the end of the discussion panel, Maurizio Genesini, the PastPresident of Assosistema intervened to talk about the path that Assosistema businesses walked through over the last years: “The companies from this sector have done great work to improve and modify the way in which they are perceived from the outside. As a matter of fact, many companies have invested all their income in research and innovation showing this way, that they know how to interpret the capacity of changing and giving precise answers to their country. They have produced an entrepreneurial model of responsibility and do not intend to stop but continue the process of constant improvement and efficiency of their businesses together with the association”.
To conclude, Marco Marchetti, the President of Assosistema thanked the participants and expressed his satisfaction on the interesting points discussed suggested by the audience that confirm the success of such initiatives and the willingness to develop common ideas by uniting with Assofornitori and all the involved stakeholders.
Detergo Magazine – June 2017