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The fact that we are able to manufacture most products on site is also owed to the course of history. We gladly take advantage of this and seize the opportunity of an environmentally friendly production.

Where do the toothbrushes come from and how are they manufactured?

The entire production of the toothbrushes – from the product development to packaging – takes place in the Black Forest. In winters past, when agricultural work outdoors was impossible, people in Black Forest farms used the time to make brushes. These brushes were sold on markets, which allowed people to make at least a little bit of money in this quiet season. Over time, this led to the development of a brush industry with a special branch for the manufacture of toothbrushes and other technologies, e.g. interdental brushes. In this region of innovators, these technologies were developed further and, to this day, result in the granting of many important patents.

All production steps take place in a single location. It would be less expensive to produce elsewhere, but the short transport routes benefit the environment.
The production naturally complies with all applicable German laws. The manufacturer is certified in accordance with DIN EN ISO 9001:2015, ISO 22000 and ISO 50001:2011. In addition, solar energy is used for production and there is an in-house water cycle for the cooling water used to cool the machines.

The components of the raw materials can be found on the individual product pages.

Production of a toothbrush

Step 1: Injection moulding

That’s the name of the production process of the plastic handle with the holes for the bristles. In the case of the interchangeable brush head toothbrushes, it is used for the production of the handle and the little disc for the brush head with holes. A plastic granulate is heated up and, using high pressure, it is injected into a metal mould when it is in its liquid form. Following a cool down period, the mould opens and a robot removes the handles, which are then transferred to the machine that adds the bristles. For a 2-component or multi-component toothbrush (like the yaweco interchangeable brush head toothbrush), the hard plastic (in this case a polypropylene/PP) is injected before the softer plastic (thermoplastic elastomer/TPE), which partially encloses the hard plastic.

Step 2: Adding the bristles

The bristle groups are “plugged” into the holes by a computer-controlled special machine. An anchor wire ensures that the bristles stay in the hole. Depending on the degree of hardness of the toothbrush, differently coloured bristles with different diameters are used. Corresponding to the bristle configuration, the bristle groups are cut to different lengths. The yaweco interchangeable brush head toothbrush features a high-low configuration, a so-called interdental cut in order to better reach the spaces between the teeth. The pull-off forces of the individual filaments (bristles) and the bristle groups are measured for each production batch. They have to withstand a pull-off force of at least 15 newtons to ensure that they do not come off when brushing teeth.

Step 3: Rounding the edges of the bristles

After the bristles are cut to their respective lengths, the ends of the bristles are still sharp, which would harm gums and the dental enamel. That is why the ends of the bristles are machined by rotating grinding units until they have been perfectly rounded. The optimal rounding of the bristles is a key quality characteristic of a toothbrush. yaweco toothbrushes are manufactured using cutting edge, state-of-the-art machines. The result of the rounding process of each production batch is examined under a microscope and documented.

Step 4: Packaging

The finished toothbrush is packaged in a blister-display package. A blister hood, for which yaweco uses a bio-PET film, is formed for this purpose. The brush is placed in the formed blister hood and then sealed with a cardboard card. Following a final quality check, the toothbrushes are packaged by hand and prepared for shipping.

While the bio-PET film packaging is already more environmentally friendly than conventional PET film packaging, we continue to develop even more environmentally friendly packaging solutions. However, the associated transition process takes several months. That means that, in early 2020, we plan to first transition the refill packs with replacement brush heads to pure cardboard packaging and then, in a next step, the toothbrushes as well.