Asbestos was used far and wide in the US and other developed countries before being phased out in the 1980s as the health effects became more and more apparent to the public. While this blog generally focuses on asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) such as construction materials, asbestos was also used in many commercial and industrial products, including filters. Asbestos filters were generally used in commercial and industrial grade processes, with the possibility of tainting their products or sometimes being built into them.
Asbestos Filters in Beer and Wine Making
Recently a spike in oesophageal cancer, esophagus or “gullet” cancer in the UK is being traced back to the common use of asbestos to filter beer in the 1980s and before. Asbestos liquid filters were often used in commercial industries for filtering acid-heavy liquids such as beers, wine, and even fruit juice, along with more industrial applications like chemical and oil filtration. It was also used in bars and pubs such as mentioned above to filter beers in taps, leading to the fourfold rise in gullet cancer mentioned in this UK article.
Industrial Asbestos Air Filters
Asbestos air filters, made out of asbestos textiles or cellulose impregnated with asbestos, have and continue to be used in processes and air filters where super-fine particulate matter needs to be captured, especially at high temperatures. These are commonly found in industrial factories to screen out dangerous gasses or in the US AEC (Atomic Energy Commission) related factories for filtering out nuclear particles microns in diameter.
Asbestos Filter Products: Cigarettes
The brand Kent are infamous for their use of asbestos filters in their brand of cigarettes. While the asbestos filters were discontinued after numerous complaints in the span of the decade, the use of the lesson known but more deadly crocidolite asbestos (see our full breakdown of crocidolite in our blog, Serpentine vs Amphibole Asbestos: Uses and Dangers) made report of asbestos-related illnesses such as asbestosis and mesothelioma much more common.
If you need help identifying and dealing with asbestos in your business, it’s time to contact Fiber Control, Inc. We have years of experience in dealing with asbestos in commercial properties. Learn more about our asbestos abatement process and reach out to us to start the conversation.