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Dispensers vs Amenities

There has been a lot of hype in the media lately about the change of large hotel groups such as Mariott International and Holiday Inns to change to wall mounted dispensers in the bathrooms.

I came across this interesting article which is worth the read Click Here it’s an article written by Brian Cohen.  It explains the pros and cons of dispensers vs disposable packaged amenities.

I have been in the amenities industry for 20 years now and dispensers always seem to be a contentious issue.

Dispensers are only as good as the level of training given to the staff. They need to be refilled, cleaned and sterilised daily.  Just imagine: You shower, pump the liquids into your hand, then wash your bum. Then you pump liquids again to wash other body parts, is there cross-contamination? I would say so!  Do the hotels sterilise the dispensers after each person has been in the room? I would hazard a guess, not!

Each dispenser needs to be refilled, the bulk products are supplied in either 5 litre containers or 25 litre drums,  these are made from plastic.  These too will end up in landfills if not recycled.  1 x 5 litre drum is about 123 grams and the little 30ml bottles are less than 10 grams each,  so there are 166 serving of liquids in a 5 litre refill at 30ml per serving.   The saving is actually only 43 units per 5 litre,  however the cost implication is huge.

30 000 30ml bottles sent to the recycling yard = 1 tonne of material.  so we should recycle,  not put these little bottles into landfill.

The knock on effect will be huge and many jobs will be lost in the industry.

  • Amenities are manufactured around the world and create thousands of jobs,  from the blow moulding to the filling and distribution.
  • the small bottles are marketing tools for hotels,  they are taken home and put into bathroom cupboards where they are left unused for many years.  however the brand is always in the consumers face when the cupboard is opened.
  • small bottles are hygienic, easier to use,  and stock is easier to control.
  • Wall dispenser could be rendered useless if it falls off of the wall, is broken, or is simply not functional due to lack of proper maintenance
  • Dispensing product can be more difficult than necessary — such as pumping numerous times just to use enough product
  • Housekeeping staff must be called if wall dispenser was never refilled (this is normally discovered once you are already naked and in the shower, seriously inconvenient!)
  • Guests can potentially tamper with wall dispensers, depending on their designs
  • Potential contamination of germs with the number of people who use wall dispensers if they are not cleaned or disinfected properly
  • Guests can take small bottles or tubes of unused products with them, as they are convenient for traveling
  • As with other environmental measures, wall dispensers are touted to guests as environmentally friendly when really the main focus may be to save the hotel or resort property money.

Hotels should rather invest in a good recycling programme and donate the plastic bottles to manufacture furniture, bricks etc for poverty stricken areas thereby giving back to the communities.  Hotel rooms contain plastic water bottles, plastic bin bags and laundry bags, pens, glass cover,  even tea bags contain plastic, so why get rid of an incredible marketing opportunity?

Soap can be recycled and donated to schools to teach the importance of hand washing.


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Black Friday

Why Is It Called Black Friday? History and Origins of the Shopping Day

Black Friday, the day where stores say they are slashing their prices for a limited time and consumers camp out in front of them to wait for these sales, is such a uniquely American event that it has begun cutting into Thanksgiving – the first American holiday.

The day after Thanksgiving being a day dedicated to holiday shopping has become more commonplace and less of a local news story, and it remains one of the busiest shopping days for stores across the country. These retailers have also been taking advantage of online sales both to maximize profits and prevent riots. Now hundreds of millions of Americans partake in some form of Black Friday.

But where did we get the terminology for it? The word Black before a day has historically been used to discuss disasters on Wall Street a la Black Thursday, Black Monday and Black Tuesday referring to the stock market crashes of 1929 and 1987. How did Black Friday become associated with profits and not crashes?

Black Friday Origins: Where Did the Name Come From?

Whereas Black Thursday, Monday and Tuesday were named for the dark economic outlook they brought with them, Black Friday is named such for positive reasons. Accountants use “black” to reflect profit in companies, and “red” for loss. Thus, going from a loss to a profit is referred to as being “out of the red” and “in the black.”

With the money that the day so consistently brought, retailers began referring to it as Black Friday due to its profitable nature. It was helping many companies end the year in the black, or at least closer to the black.

Black Friday as we know it has been advertised every year since sometime in the 1980s. But it has been around longer than that.

Black Friday History

The earliest iteration of a similar sort of “Black Friday” phrase is from the early 1950s. This was not used in a positive sense; instead it was how Philadelphia police referred to the massive crowds the day after Thanksgiving that would appear for shopping and tourism, often in advance of the Army-Navy college football game which was often hosted in Philly.

It was also, early on, used briefly to describe the day after Thanksgiving in terms of employees calling in sick at work so they could have a four-day weekend.

The idea of the day after Thanksgiving being a massive day for holiday shopping has never been lost on retailers. Through the early 1900s, retailers actually deeply resented that Thanksgiving fell on the last Thursday in November, feeling as though the holiday sales started too late in the season to ultimately help their yearly profits get into the black. The Retail Dry Goods Association pleaded their case with President Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1930s about its effect on sales.

Roosevelt was receptive to their request, and in 1939 moved Thanksgiving back to the Thursday before the last one of November, in that year’s case the Nov. 23 instead of the Nov. 30. This new Thanksgiving tradition was met with some derision at first, with some snidely referring to it as “Franksgiving.” But in 1941, Congress and Roosevelt made it federal law that Thanksgiving Daywould be the fourth Thursday in November.

By the 1960s, Philadelphia’s “Black Friday” name had made it into print, but brought a negative connotation due to the stock market association and the hostile crowds of consumers. There was a brief push to turn it into “Big Friday” but it never quite took. Black Friday, meanwhile, stuck and began growing.

It was in the 1980s that retailers began using Black Friday in “get-in-the-black” terms, allowing themselves to lean into a phrase that had become established on a day already known as being great for sales. Why mess with a good thing?

The 1990s and 2000s, with toy crazes like Tickle Me Elmo, are when Black Friday began to take shape the way we see it today, and the way local news still covers it: people dressed for the bitter cold waiting in long lines, fighting to get into the store and get their gifts in time.

The at-times thousands of people at a single store fighting for toys and other goods have mostly been used for viral video fodder, but there have been times these crowds have turned deadly. Most notably, in 2008 the large crowd of over 2,000 at a Walmart (WMT – Get Report) in Valley Stream, N.Y., trampled an employee to death.

Other more recent changes to Black Friday traditions, such as online sales or businesses opening doors Thursday night instead of early Friday, were meant to maximize profits. But these are also things that have likely helped quell impatient, rioting hordes of consumers who stayed up all night to get a new television.

They’ve also helped make Black Friday sales a multibillion-dollar endeavor by themselves. Adobe Analytics estimated that Black Friday sales for retailers were approximately $7.9 billion in 2017. There are more methods than ever for Black Friday shopping, and American consumers have been all too eager to take advantage.

Are There Other “Black Fridays”?

Contrary to a rumor that was started on the internet several years ago, the term Black Friday does not originate from the days of slavery. This baseless myth, which claimed that slave traders would sell their slaves at a discount on the day after Thanksgiving, has been thoroughly debunked.

There is, however, a Black Friday that originates from the 1800s. Like Black Thursday, Monday and Tuesday, this one actually does involve finance. One of the first Wall Street panics, two speculators named Jay Gould and James Fisk attempted to corner the gold market by buying large amounts of bullion to drive up the price and leverage their relationship to President Grant’s brother-in-law to get him to limit its availability. Grant, upon realizing what was happening, instead ordered the U.S. Treasury to sell more gold. On Friday, Sept. 14, 1869, the gold market collapsed and the entire market fell dramatically as a result. This was disastrous for many investors, and thus this became known as another sort of Black Friday.

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Charlie Love Studio

The most incredible dolls are available in store now. We will be stocking both the bunnies and unicorns.

“At the intersection where your gifts, talents and abilities meet a human need, there-in you will discover your purpose”, ARISTOTLE.

So love this quote, its so true – swipe left to see the most beautiful faces. These mothers are working hard in the township of Diepsloot to empower themselves, support their families and be relevant in their communities. Training has been completed and these talented women will be helping make up my blank dolls and some basic wardrobe items. I will still be quiet involved with attire, make up of the dolls, embroidery and bringing it all together. So happy and humbled to be a part of this journey. This quote feels so true right now. To all you beautiful souls who have been supporting Charlie Loves, thank you thank you thank you…

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The High Street Beard Oil

We will be stocking the popular Cape Town mens brand The High Street Beard Oil,  we will be carrying the full range of products in our store and online.  Be sure to add these to your shopping cart.  they make great gifts for guys.


A Little Bit Of Africa

Undoubtedly the most unique beard care range in the world. Handcrafted with the finest African Baobab oil, Marula oil, Kalahari melon seed oil, Mafura butter and Gum arabic.

No Oily Beards!

Our lightweight, rapid absorbing oils keep your beard hair conditioned and your skin moisturized and hydrated. Say goodbye to bearddruff, itchiness and dry coarse bristles.

Smell Amazing

All our products are fragranced with a unique combination of essential oils and perfumery aromas, which when combined deliver longer lasting complex aromas that wear like a good cologne.

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Mitras Amenities is a manufacture of hotel amenities and has been servicing the hotel industry for 18 years,  the hospitality market in South Africa has grown substantially with the introduction of Air B & B’s and Guesthouses in every corner of South Africa.  We have put together this online store to service the smaller establishments.

You can now order smaller quantities and have them shipped to your door.  We are introducing exciting new products over the next few month as well as online gifting solutions.  let us know if there is a product you would like us to add to our range.  New exciting items include our skin care range,  male grooming products, handmade soaps and candles.

We are also working with pottery companies and other local crafters to bring your innovative products.