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MONTREAL, CANADA, Jan. 21, 2013 - As we begin a new year, gastroenteritis and the flu have hit hard. We know that hand washing is crucial to limit their spread, especially in public places. A recent study by the renowned Mayo Clinic, whose conclusions Cascades supports, sheds some light on the major role that inadequate hand drying plays in the spread of germs and bacteria.

Drying with paper towels the best option

The Mayo Clinic study uses research to support its claim that "paper towels can dry hands efficiently, remove bacteria effectively and cause less contamination of the washroom environment" and that "paper towels reduced the numbers of all types of bacteria on the hands. However, the hot air dryer increased all types of bacteria on the hands."

"Usually, instructions on proper hygiene focus on handwashing, without informing people of the risks associated with inadequate drying. Even though Cascades produces paper towels, we want to add our voice to that of other groups so people adopt behaviours that are more effective in controlling the spread of infectious diseases. As well, we're addressing an issue we know something about, which is drying the hands with paper," said Suzanne Blanchet, President and CEO of Cascades Tissue Group.

Since bacteria are more likely to be transmitted from wet skin than dry skin, proper drying after washing should be an integral part of the hand hygiene process.

"While the public is concerned about the risk of contamination, particularly now with the number of cases of gastroenteritis and the flu, this information about hand drying can lead us to question our habits. We think it's important to give the facts to as many people as possible and contribute in our own way to controlling the spread of germs," said Mrs. Blanchet.

About Cascades Tissue Group

Cascades Tissue Group, a division of Cascades, ULC, is the fourth largest manufacturer of tissue paper in North America. Founded in 1964, Cascades produces, converts and markets packaging and tissue products that are composed mainly of recycled fiber. The company employs more than 12,000 employees, who work in more than 100 units located in North America and Europe. With its management philosophy, half a century of experience in recycling, and continuous efforts in research and development as driving forces, Cascades continues to serve its clients with innovative products. Cascades' shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange, under the ticker symbol CAS. For more information about Cascades Tissue Group and its environmental product line, visit www.afh.cascades.com.

The full text of the Mayo clinic study is available here: www.mayoclinicproceedings.org/article/S0025-6196(12)00393-X/fulltext

SOURCE: Cascades Tissue Group
For further information:

Source:

Mélanie St-Pierre
Communications and Sustainable Development
Cascades Tissue Group
Telephone: 450-444-6459

Information:

Jade Lavallée-Labossière
Senior Consultant
H+K Stratégies
Telephone: 514-395-0375, ext. 224
Email: jade.lavallee-labossiere@hkstrategies.ca
Cell: 514-349-9090
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