Steve Stevenson

President's Message

by George (Steve) Stevenson
2023 Is Time For An Optimistic Reset

There is no doubt that we as dry cleaners have had to persevere through a couple of challenging years. Customer volume was negatively impacted by mask mandates and social distancing. Production was negatively impacted by supply chain and labor shortages. Cash flow and profits were negatively impacted by wage/supply/energy inflation. But the calendar year has changed to 2023 and with it is an opportunity for a positive reset. 64% of people in United States of America say they are optimistic that 2023 will be a better year for them than it was in 2022. Here are some things that should put you in that 64%.

1. The global drycleaning and laundry services market is expected to recover and grow at a CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) of 5% from 2021 and reach $118.3 billion in 2023. 2. A labor shift is expected in 2023 away from businesses in and supporting the housing and construction indus tries and into service industries.

3. The World Bank recently said it expects energy prices to decline by 11% in 2023.

4. Experts at the Federal Reserve are predicting a 3.1% drop in inflation in 2023, and Morningstar has an even brighter outlook: an average 2.6% inflation rate between 2022 and 2026, just 0.6% over the 2% target set by the Federal Reserve. That would mean the rising prices in 2022 represent the peak of this spike, and we’re on our way down.

5. With Pandemic Restrictions lifted it is time to get more involved with PDCA. There is a January 21, 2023 Meet and Greet in the Pittsburgh area and more events in the planning stage for 2023.

Mark Pollock

Membership Director's Message

by Mark Pollock

For the past several years, I have spoken with you in this space in my role as DLI District 2 Director. At the end of July 2022 my term was completed. In October, I happily accepted the position of Director of Membership for PDCA. Going forward, I look ahead to discussing the benefits of association membership, as well as relating future plans to make PDCA more member-driven and responsive. I have spent the last several months traveling around Pennsylvania and Delaware visiting our current members, as well as some potential ones. It was a pleasure putting faces to names and renewing old acquaintances!

What I found was a renewed spirit after a long and difficult period of downturn. Most of the folks that I visited believed that the worst was over and better days lie ahead. Sure, some are still feeling some negative effects, but, generally speaking, optimism was the consensus.

Going forward, my plan is to continue to keep in touch with all of you, either in person, by phone or email. I want to be a resource available to help you grow your businesses.

In addition, PDCA will be holding live events around the area in 2023. On January 21st, everyone is invited to a Meet and Greet at the Hilton Garden Inn in Cran-berry Township, Pa. It will be a great opportunity to enjoy food and bever-ages while net-working with fellow profes-sionals. Maybe make a new friend or two! Best part: it’s all FREE!!

Other events will occur in Central/Northeastern Pa and in the Philadelphia area in late Spring and early Summer 2023. Information on these dates will be forthcoming.

Please feel free to reach out to me if I can be of assistance to you concerning PDCA and DLI. My email is mark@pdclean.org and my cell is 267-701-6045. Let's work together to ensure better days ahead!

Happy and healthy New Year to you and your families!

Tech Talk

How to Clean Cloth Face Masks

Face masks may be with us for some time. This is a great service you can offer your customers. The most important concern is making sure the masks are disinfected and ready to wear when you return them. Disinfecting is different from sanitizing. Disinfecting kills microscopic organisms (germs, viruses, fungi).
Disinfection is usually achieved by using EPA approved chemicals that kill the organisms and prevent them from spreading. Sanitizing reduces, not kills, the number and growth of bacteria, viruses and germs.
For face masks, we think it is important that you take every step to ensure they are virus and bacteria free.
1. Place the face mask from each customer or household in a net bag ans secure the bag closed. Then mark the bag to identify the customer. The new bag will help prevent the face masks from entangling. It is important that you leave ample room in the bag so the face masks get the necessary mechanical action during laundering.
For a small net bag such as the size used for lingerie, usually 20-25 masks will fit well. You can adjust the number based on the size of the bag. The key is to provide enough space for the mask to move around in the bag without tangling. You might want to consider giving your customer a net bag they can use at home to store their face masks until they bring them to you.
2. There are a couple of ways to ensure disinfection during laundering. We suggest using an EPA-approved chemical that would be safe on most colored fabrics. The reusable facemasks from the general public can be made from dyed or printed fabrics, Also, some of these masks may contain spandex fibers. In these instances, chlorine-based bleach would not be appropriate, A color-safe bleach, peroxyacetic acid or hydrogen peroxide, a citric acid product or quatemary ammonium like Lysol would work best.
Since these masks may contain cotton, you want to minimize shrinkage. So, while hot water (160F) is best, with the appropriate chemicals, water temperature can be reduced. 3. After tumble drying, medium setting, the masks can be re- moved from the bag, Discard any inserts, and press. 4. Return the disinfected, pressed masks to your customer.
Reprinted with permission of DLI