Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Replacement Lids for Toilet Bowls & Tanks - Too Smart Toilet?

‘Smart toilet’ monitors for signs of disease

A disease-detecting “precision health” toilet can sense multiple signs of illness through automated urine and stool analysis, a new Stanford study reports.
smart toilet graphic
The smart toilet automatically sends data extracted from any sample to a secure, cloud-based system for safekeeping.
James Strommer
There’s a new disease-detecting technology in the lab of Sanjiv “Sam” Gambhir, MD PhD, and its No. 1 source of data is number one. And number two.
It’s a smart toilet. But not the kind that lifts its own lid in preparation for use; this toilet is fitted with technology that can detect a range of disease markers in stool and urine, including those of some cancers, such as colorectal or urologic cancers. The device could be particularly appealing to individuals who are genetically predisposed to certain conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome, prostate cancer or kidney failure, and want to keep on top of their health.
“Our concept dates back well over 15 years,” said Gambhir, professor and chair of radiology. “When I’d bring it up, people would sort of laugh because it seemed like an interesting idea, but also a bit odd.” With a pilot study of 21 participants now completed, Gambhir and his team have made their vision of a precision health-focused smart toilet a reality.
Gambhir’s toilet is an ordinary toilet outfitted with gadgets inside the bowl. These tools, a suite of different technologies, use motion sensing to deploy a mixture of tests that assess the health of any deposits. Urine samples undergo physical and molecular analysis; stool assessment is based on physical characteristics.
The toilet automatically sends data extracted from any sample to a secure, cloud-based system for safekeeping. In the future, Gambhir said, the system could be integrated into any health care provider’s record-keeping system for quick and easy access.
A paper describing the research was published April 6 in Nature Biomedical Engineering. Gambhir is the senior author. Seung-min Park, PhD, senior research scientist; David Won, MD, PhD, former visiting scholar in the Molecular Imaging Program at Stanford; and postdoctoral scholar Brian Lee, PhD, share lead authorship.

Pulling double duty

The toilet falls into a category of technology known as continuous health monitoring, which encompasses wearables like smart watches. “The thing about a smart toilet, though, is that unlike wearables, you can’t take it off,” Gambhir said. “Everyone uses the bathroom — there’s really no avoiding it — and that enhances its value as a disease-detecting device.”
Although the idea may take some getting used to, Gambhir, who holds the Virginia and D.K. Ludwig Professorship for Clinical Investigation in Cancer Research, envisions the smart toilet as part of the average home bathroom. In facilitating that broad adaption, Gambhir designed the “smart” aspect as an add-on — a piece of technology that’s readily integrated into any old porcelain bowl. “It’s sort of like buying a bidet add-on that can be mounted right into your existing toilet,” he said. “And like a bidet, it has little extensions that carry out different purposes.”
These extensions sport an array of health-monitoring technologies that look for signs of disease. Both urine and stool samples are captured on video and are then processed by a set of algorithms that can distinguish normal “urodynamics” (flow rate, stream time and total volume, among other parameters) and stool consistencies from those that are unhealthy.
Alongside physical stream analysis, the toilet also deploys uranalysis strips, or “dipstick tests,” to measure certain molecular features. White blood cell count, consistent blood contamination, certain levels of proteins and more can point to a spectrum of diseases, from infection to bladder cancer to kidney failure. In its current stage of development, Gambhir said, the toilet can measure 10 different biomarkers.
Sam Gambhir
Sanjiv "Sam" Gambhir

It’s still early days, though, with a total of 21 participants having tested the toilet over the course of several months. To get a better feel for “user acceptance” more broadly, the team surveyed 300 prospective smart-toilet users. About 37% said they were “somewhat comfortable” with the idea, and 15% said they were “very comfortable” with the idea of baring it all in the name of precision health.

ID please

One of the most important aspects of the smart toilet may well be one of the most surprising — and perhaps unnerving: It has a built-in identification system. “The whole point is to provide precise, individualized health feedback, so we needed to make sure the toilet could discern between users,” Gambhir said. “To do so, we made a flush lever that reads fingerprints.” The team realized, however, that fingerprints aren’t quite foolproof. What if one person uses the toilet, but someone else flushes it? Or what if the toilet is of the auto-flush variety?
They added a small scanner that images a rather camera-shy part of the body. You might call it the polar opposite of facial recognition. In other words, to fully reap the benefits of the smart toilet, users must make their peace with a camera that scans their anus.
“We know it seems weird, but as it turns out, your anal print is unique,” Gambhir said. The scans — both finger and nonfinger — are used purely as a recognition system to match users to their specific data. No one, not you or your doctor, will see the scans.
By no means is this toilet a replacement for a doctor, or even a diagnosis, Gambhir said. In fact, in many cases, the toilet won’t ever report data to the individual user. In an ideal scenario, should something questionable arise — like blood in the urine — an app fitted with privacy protection would send an alert to the user’s health care team, allowing professionals to determine the next steps for a proper diagnosis. The data would be stored in a secure, cloud-based system. Data protection, both in terms of identification and sample analyses, is a crucial piece of this research, Gambhir said. “We have taken rigorous steps to ensure that all the information is de-identified when it’s sent to the cloud and that the information — when sent to health care providers — is protected under HIPAA,” he said, referring to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, which restricts the disclosure of health care records.

Smart toilet 2.0

As Gambhir and his team continue to develop the smart toilet, they’re focusing on a few things: increasing the number of participants, integrating molecular features into stool analysis and refining the technologies that are already working. They’re even individualizing the tests deployed by the toilet. For example, someone with diabetes may need his or her urine monitored for glucose, whereas someone else who is predisposed to bladder or kidney cancer might want the toilet to monitor for blood.
Gambhir’s other goal is to further develop molecular analysis for stool samples. “That’s a bit trickier, but we’re working toward it,” Gambhir said. “The smart toilet is the perfect way to harness a source of data that’s typically ignored — and the user doesn’t have to do anything differently.”
Other Stanford co-authors of the paper are Diego Escobedo, an intern in the Molecular Imaging Program at Stanford; former postdoctoral scholar Andre Esteva, PhD; graduate students Alexander Lozano and Amin Aalipour, PhD; urology resident T. Jessie Ge, MD; graduate student Chengyang Yao; former Stanford graduate student Sunil Bodapati; Friso Achterberg, MD, and Jeesu Kim, PhD, visiting scholars of the Molecular Imaging Program at Stanford; research scientist Jung Ho Yu, PhD; undergraduate student Alexander Bhatt; Ryan Spitler, PhD, deputy director of the Precision Health and Integrated Diagnostics Center; and Shan Wang, PhD, professor of materials science engineering and electrical engineering.
Gambhir is a member of Stanford Bio-X, the Stanford Cardiovascular Institute, the Stanford Cancer Institute and the Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute at Stanford.
Researchers from Seoul Song Do Hospital in South Korea, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, the University of Toronto, Leiden University in the Netherlands, Pohang University of Science and Technology in South Korea, and the Catholic University of Korea also contributed to this work.
This study was funded by the National Institutes of Health (grants UL1 TR001085 and T32 CA118681).



Sunday, April 12, 2020

The Meta Picture | Paper dress, Toilet paper wedding dress, Toilet ...

What Everyone’s Getting Wrong About the Toilet Paper Shortage

It isn’t really about hoarding. And there isn’t an easy fix.

Stores have placed limits on purchases of toilet paper, yet they’re still selling out, suggesting that hoarding isn’t entirely to blame. Photo: Icon Sportswire/Getty Images
round the world, in countries afflicted with the coronavirus, stores are sold out of toilet paper. There have been shortages in Hong Kong, Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States. And we all know who to blame: hoarders and panic-buyers.
Well, not so fast.
Story after story explains the toilet paper outages as a sort of fluke of consumer irrationality. Unlike hand sanitizer, N95 masks, or hospital ventilators, they note, toilet paper serves no special function in a pandemic. Toilet paper manufacturers are cranking out the same supply as always. And it’s not like people are using the bathroom more often, right?
U.S. Health Secretary Alex Azar summed up the paradox in a March 13 New York Times story: “Toilet paper is not an effective way to prevent getting the coronavirus, but they’re selling out.” The president of a paper manufacturer offered the consensus explanation: “You are not using more of it. You are just filling up your closet with it.”
Faced with this mystifying phenomenon, media outlets have turned to psychologists to explain why people are cramming their shelves with a household good that has nothing to do with the pandemic. Read the coverage and you’ll encounter all sorts of fascinating concepts, from “zero risk bias” to “anticipatory anxiety.” It’s “driven by fear” and a “herd mentality,” the BBC scolded. The libertarian Mises Institute took the opportunity to blame anti-gouging laws. The Atlantic published a short documentary harking back to the great toilet paper scare of 1973, which was driven by misinformation.
Most outlets agreed that the spike in demand would be short-lived, subsiding as soon as the hoarders were satiated.
No doubt there’s been some panic-buying, particularly once photos of empty store shelves began circulating on social media. There have also been a handful of documented cases of true hoarding. But you don’t need to assume that most consumers are greedy or irrational to understand how coronavirus would spur a surge in demand. And you can stop wondering where in the world people are storing all that Quilted Northern.
There’s another, entirely logical explanation for why stores have run out of toilet paper — one that has gone oddly overlooked in the vast majority of media coverage. It has nothing to do with psychology and everything to do with supply chains. It helps to explain why stores are still having trouble keeping it in stock, weeks after they started limiting how many a customer could purchase.
In short, the toilet paper industry is split into two, largely separate markets: commercial and consumer. The pandemic has shifted the lion’s share of demand to the latter. People actually do need to buy significantly more toilet paper during the pandemic — not because they’re making more trips to the bathroom, but because they’re making more of them at home. With some 75% of the U.S. population under stay-at-home orders, Americans are no longer using the restrooms at their workplace, in schools, at restaurants, at hotels, or in airports.
Georgia-Pacific, a leading toilet paper manufacturer based in Atlanta, estimates that the average household will use 40% more toilet paper than usual if all of its members are staying home around the clock. That’s a huge leap in demand for a product whose supply chain is predicated on the assumption that demand is essentially constant. It’s one that won’t fully subside even when people stop hoarding or panic-buying.

Boxes of Angel Soft toilet paper for the consumer market roll off the line at Georgia-Pacific’s paper mill in Palatka, Florida. Credit: Image courtesy of Georgia-Pacific
If you’re looking for where all the toilet paper went, forget about people’s attics or hall closets. Think instead of all the toilet paper that normally goes to the commercial market — those office buildings, college campuses, Starbucks, and airports that are now either mostly empty or closed. That’s the toilet paper that’s suddenly going unused.
So why can’t we just send that toilet paper to Safeway or CVS? That’s where supply chains and distribution channels come in.
Not only is it not the same product, but it often doesn’t come from the same mills.
Talk to anyone in the industry, and they’ll tell you the toilet paper made for the commercial market is a fundamentally different product from the toilet paper you buy in the store. It comes in huge rolls, too big to fit on most home dispensers. The paper itself is thinner and more utilitarian. It comes individually wrapped and is shipped on huge pallets, rather than in brightly branded packs of six or 12.
“Not only is it not the same product, but it often doesn’t come from the same mills,” added Jim Luke, a professor of economics at Lansing Community College, who once worked as head of planning for a wholesale paper distributor. “So for instance, Procter & Gamble [which owns Charmin] is huge in the retail consumer market. But it doesn’t play in the institutional market at all.”
Georgia-Pacific, which sells to both markets, told me its commercial products also use more recycled fiber, while the retail sheets for its consumer brands Angel Soft and Quilted Northern are typically 100% virgin fiber. Eric Abercrombie, a spokesman for the company, said it has seen demand rise on the retail side, while it expects a decline in the “away-from-home activity” that drives its business-to-business sales.
In theory, some of the mills that make commercial toilet paper could try to redirect some of that supply to the consumer market. People desperate for toilet paper probably wouldn’t turn up their noses at it. But the industry can’t just flip a switch. Shifting to retail channels would require new relationships and contracts between suppliers, distributors, and stores; different formats for packaging and shipping; new trucking routes — all for a bulky product with lean profit margins.
Because toilet paper is high volume but low value, the industry runs on extreme efficiency, with mills built to work at full capacity around the clock even in normal times. That works only because demand is typically so steady. If toilet paper manufacturers spend a bunch of money now to refocus on the retail channel, they’ll face the same problem in reverse once people head back to work again.
“The normal distribution system is like a well-orchestrated ballet,”
l-orchestrated ballet,” said Willy Shih, a professor at Harvard Business School. “If you make a delivery to a Walmart distribution center, they give you a half-hour window, and your truck has to show up then.” The changes wrought by the coronavirus, he said, “have thrown the whole thing out of balance, and everything has to readjust.”
While toilet paper is an extreme case, similar dynamics are likely to temporarily disrupt supplies of other goods, too — even if no one’s hoarding or panic-buying. The CEO of a fruit and vegetable supplier told NPR’s Weekend Edition that schools and restaurants are canceling their banana orders, while grocery stores are selling out and want more. The problem is that the bananas he sells to schools and restaurants are “petite” and sold loose in boxes of 150, whereas grocery store bananas are larger and sold in bunches. Beer companies face a similar challenge converting commercial keg sales to retail cans and bottles.
I’m absolutely convinced that very little was triggered by hoarding.
It’s all happening, of course, against the backdrop of a pandemic that makes it hard enough for these producers to keep up business as usual, let alone remold their operations to keep up with radical shifts in demand.
If there’s any good news, it’s that we can stop blaming these shortages on the alleged idiocy of our fellow consumers. “I’m absolutely convinced that very little was triggered by hoarding,” Luke said. Even a modest, reasonable amount of stocking up by millions of people in preparation for stay-at-home orders would have been enough to deplete many store shelves. From there, the ripple effects of availability concerns, coupled with a genuine increase in demand due to people staying in, are sufficient to explain the ongoing supply problems.
In the long run, the industry is still optimistic that it can adapt. “We’ve got fiber supply, we’ve got trees,” said Georgia-Pacific’s Abercrombie. “It’s just a matter of making the product and getting it out.”
In the meantime, some enterprising restaurateurs have begun selling their excess supplies of toilet paper, alcohol, and other basics. Last week I picked up takeout at a local restaurant with a side of toilet paper and bananas. The toilet paper was thin and individually wrapped. The bananas were puny. They’ll do just fine.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Testimonial: "This is great. It's been 30 years I'm looking for this. The plumbers told me I'd never find it. Now if you could just find me a part for my old car?" (Case 1000:1100 tank lid, White, 2010)

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Replacement Toilet Lids and Seats - The U.S.'s $13 Billion Aircraft Carrier Has a Toilet Problem -This Old Toilet 650-483-1139

USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) Moves

  • The toilets on America’s two newest carriers clog frequently, causing problems throughout the ship.
  • The ships use a scaled-up version of airliner toilets, using vacuum power to evacuate human waste.
  • As a result, the system must regularly be cleaned with an expensive acid solution that costs $400,000 per use.

The toilets on America’s two newest aircraft carriers, USS Bush and USS Ford are experiencing clogging problems, and the only way to keep the pipes draining is to use a special, extremely expensive acid solution. The two carriers toilet plumbing system, modeled on the plumbing system installed on airliners, clog frequently requiring the Navy to regularly service them with an acid that costs $400,000 per use.
The problem, first reported by Bloomberg, is mentioned in a General Accountability Office (GAO) report on sustainment costs for Navy ships. The GAO report states that the Navy used a brand new toilet and sewage system for the USS George H.W. Bush and USS Gerald R. Ford, the last two aircraft carriers to roll off the production lines. The system is “similar to what is on commercial aircraft, but increased in scale for a crew of over 4,000 people.” GAO:
To address unexpected and frequent clogging of the system, the Navy has determined that it needs to acid flush the CVN 77 and 78’s sewage system on a regular basis, which is an unplanned maintenance action for the entire service life of the ship.
Each acid flush costs $400,000. The Navy, the GAO states, cannot predict how often this expensive procedure is necessary, making it difficult to predict how often it will need to repeat the procedure over the 50-year lifespans of each carrier.
The USS George H W Bush Arrives In Portsmouth
The clogging problems with the new toilet system were well known even before USS Ford finished construction. In 2011, the Navy Times reported on toilet issues with the USS Bush, the first carrier to feature the toilet vacuum system, writing that during the ship’s maiden deployment in 2009, the ship averaged 25 calls a week to fix the commodes and all 432 commodes on the ship went down twice. The problem was reportedly so widespread sailors were peeing in bottles and emptying them overboard and experiencing health problems.
In response, the Navy claimed Bush had a 94 percent toilet availability, and that most problems were fixed in a few minutes. The Navy blamed the sailors flushing “inappropriate” materials down the toilets, including feminine hygiene products, food, and clothing. But the Navy also acknowledged that the system differed from the old system in that outages in one toilet affected a wider grouping of toilets than before.
The U.S. Navy plans to build up to 11 Ford-class carriers, gradually replacing existing Nimitz-class ships over the coming decades. The next ships in class are the USS John F. Kennedy, USS Enterprise, and USS Doris Miller. USS Ford cost a whopping $13 billion, more than twice as much as the USS Bush. USS Ford has experienced a number of technical issues, including getting the electromagnetic aircraft launch system working, the advanced arresting gear, a new radar system, and electromagnetically powered weapon elevators.

USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) Moves
USS Ford at sea, October 2019.

The GAO report also mentions a bigger problem with USS Ford than faulty toilets: the ship, designed to be less expensive to sail than previous classes, was projected to cost $77.3 billion over 50 years to operate, or $1.54 billion annually. Instead, the GAO projects the ship will cost $123 billion over the same period, or $2.46 billion a year. If the Navy builds all eleven ships the service will see a combined cost increase of $10 billion a year—the equivalent of four new destroyers with toilets that flush.
by Kyle Mizokami

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Replacement Toilet Lids and Seats - Americans Coping With the Coronavirus Are Clogging Toilets -This Old Toilet 650-483-1139

Credit...Tamir Kalifa for The New York Times

Many Americans seem to be following the recommendations of public health officials to clean and sterilize countertops, doorknobs, faucets and other frequently touched surfaces in their homes.
The problem? Many are then tossing the disinfectant wipes, paper towels and other paper products they used into the toilet.
The result has been a coast-to-coast surge in backed-up sewer lines and overflowing toilets, according to plumbers and public officials, who have pleaded with Americans to spare the nation’s pipes from further strain.
Many say the woes besieging the nation’s infrastructure have been compounded by the lack of toilet paper on store shelves, which is leading some to use paper towels, napkins or baby wipes instead.
Across the country — in Charleston, S.C.northeastern OhioLexington, Ky.Austin, Texas; and Spokane, Wash. — wastewater treatment officials have beseeched residents not to flush wipes down the toilet using the hashtag #WipesClogPipes.
“Flushable wipes are not truly flushable,” said Jim Bunsey, chief operating officer of the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District. “They might go down the drain, but they do not break up like regular toilet paper.”
The plumbing repair company Roto-Rooter issued a similar plea to its customers, and said that substituting facial tissue for toilet paper was “another bad idea,” unless it’s used in small amounts and flushed frequently.
The California State Water Resources Control Board warned this week that “even wipes labeled ‘flushable’ will clog pipes and interfere with sewage collection and treatment throughout the state.”
“Flushing wipes, paper towels and similar products down toilets will clog sewers and cause backups and overflows at wastewater treatment facilities, creating an additional public health risk in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic,” it said.

by Michael Levenson

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Replacement Toilet Lids and Seats - Why bidets are better than buying countless rolls of toilet paper -This Old Toilet 650-483-1139

Swiss Madison Carre Bidet

If you were walking barefoot in a park or yard and stepped in dog poop, would you only use a couple of napkins to wipe it off? No. You'd probably wash it off with water. And it's for similar reasons that people worldwide use bidets to clean themselves after using the bathroom. In western Europe, South America, the Middle East, and Asia. They're cleaner and more environmentally friendly than just plain old toilet paper. But there's one place where bidets are not so welcome, which made us wonder: Why haven't they caught on in the US?
The word bidet actually means "pony" or "small horse" in French, since using a bidet is similar to straddling a pony. And it's in France that the first known bidet appeared, in the 1700s. But using water for cleansing had been around long before that. The Middle East, South Asia, and other regions had been using small vessels of water — called lotas or tabo —  for cleansing for centuries before bidets appeared.
People would scoop the water with their hands to wash themselves off. At first, it was mostly for the upper class, but by the 19th century, indoor plumbing led to the bidets we have today. You might describe it as a really low sink next to the toilet. Its popularity spread from France to all across Europe and other parts of the world, except for America.
Part of the reason is that bidets got a bad reputation. Americans first saw them in World War II in European brothels, so, many associated them with sex work. By the time Arnold Cohen tried to introduce them to America in the 1960s, it was too late. He couldn't seem to defeat the stigma, and he quickly discovered that no one really wanted "to hear about Tushy Washing 101."
In the meantime, Japan was taking bidets to the next level. Toto, a Japanese company, made some of its bidets electric. So, why hasn't America embraced the bidet? Well, bathrooms in the US aren't really built for bidets. There's no space or additional plumbing setup for bidet fixtures. But the biggest reason it hasn't caught on comes down to habit. Most Americans grew up using toilet paper. And many might not even know there's an alternative way to stay clean.
But using a bidet actually makes a huge difference. For one, it's more environmentally friendly. The bidet uses only one-eighth of a gallon of water, while it takes about 37 gallons of water to make a single roll of toilet paper. Americans spend $40 to $70 a year on average for toilet paper and use approximately 34 million rolls of toilet paper a day. Investing in a bidet seat or bidet attachment can lower your spending on toilet paper by 75% or more. You'll also be saving some of the 384 trees that are cut down to make a single person's lifetime toilet-paper supply.
By now, you might be wondering about wet wipes. Don't they do pretty much the same thing? Well, no. Constantly wiping can irritate the skin and give you rashes. And it can still leave residue, because you're really just smearing with paper. Not only that, but wet wipes are actually harmful to the ocean and can cause sewer damage.
But washing yourself with a bidet can help with cleanliness, which may lead to fewer instances of rashes, hemorrhoids, urinary tract infections, and other medical issues. And if you're worried about using toilet water to clean your back end, you shouldn't be. It's tap water. Just like the water from your sink.
So give the bidet a try. Maybe start off with a toilet-seat attachment. Because, in the end, it's just washing yourself without hopping into the shower!
by Michelle Yan

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Replacement Toilet Lids and Seats - Amid mysterious runs on toilet paper from Singapore to Sydney, world’s number 2 producer says shortage rumour holds no water -This Old Toilet 650-483-1139

Customers grabbing their toilet paper supply at a supermarket in Hong Kong, on Friday, February 14, 2020. Photo: APCustomers grabbing their toilet paper supply at a supermarket in Hong Kong, on Friday, February 14, 2020. Photo: AP
Customers grabbing their toilet paper supply at a supermarket in Hong Kong, on Friday, February 14, 2020. Photo: AP
Johann Christoph Michalski, the chief executive of Vinda International Holdings, was incredulous when word started spreading on social media in early February that toilet paper was about to run out in Hong Kong.
Within days, supermarket shelves across the city would stand empty as long queues of shoppers made
off with multiple bags of toilet paper rolls
 in the misguided belief that a coronavirus outbreak in mainland China would disrupt supplies. The self-fulfilling prophecy soon found its way around the world, with similar reports of panic shopping for toilet rolls, tissue paper
from Singapore to Sydney
“There are no supply shortages in Hong Kong or in China,” Michalski said in an interview with South China Morning Post, adding that people should not believe everything they read on social media.
Whatever shortage reported at the shops were “actually created by panic buying, rather than the ability of the industry to provide products,” he said. “Panic buying is very disruptive to our logistics, customers and manufacturing.”
The panic hoarding of toilet paper added to the rush for surgical masks, rubber gloves, disinfectants, and other daily necessities, going some ways to explain why Vinda’s shares soared 48 per cent this year on the Hong Kong stock exchange, outperforming the 7.2 per cent decline on the benchmark Hang Seng Index. Vinda’s shares closed Friday at HK$21, for a weekly gain of 4.7 per cent.
As Vinda resumes output next week in Hubei on the last of its 12 production queues in mainland China, the company is back on track to churn out 1.3 million tonnes of paper this year, Michalski said.
China is the world’s largest exporter of toilet paper. The country ships US$2.8 billion worth of rolls each year, making up 12 per cent of the global toilet paper export market, according to data from the Observatory of Economic Complexity, a US-based trade monitor.
China’s logistics network is gradually getting back on track, and the company has also stockpiled wood pulp for three to four months’ use ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday, which has shielded it from any shortage of key raw material.
“We still expect our profitability to increase for 2020 compared to 2019, and expect to grow in a significant way,” Michalski said.
Ironically, shipment to Hong Kong may slow in the coming months, because households are probably overstocked with toilet paper, he said, adding that Vinda spent a week transferring products from the neighbouring Guangdong province to the city.
“Our supply chain is made for regular replenishment and we can cope quite easily with surges like 10 per cent or 15 per cent … but when you have surges like in Hong Kong across the board and across [product types], it’s very difficult for our supply chain to follow.”
by Yujing Liu