‘Car wash’ for supermarket trolleys that cleans 30 in 30 seconds could halt virus spread

A new ‘car wash’ for shopping trolleys could be rolled out in the UK in a bid to stop the spread of the coronavirus. As shoppers do fewer but larger supermarket shops, trolleys are being used more than ever – but they could harbour germs that help spread the disease. However, a new cleaning contraption could be the answer for supermarkets in the UK. 


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The Clean Trolley machine was invented in the Netherlands and is now being distributed in the UK by the Lancashire-based Wilkinson Mobile Catering. 

The car wash-like contraption emits a fine anti-viral mist as trolleys pass through it, treating 30 trolleys in under 30 seconds. 

It promises to leave the trolleys virus free, using a food-safe virucide mix – a chemical agent that kills viruses, including the coronavirus. 

The company said it’s an efficient and safe way to instantly clean supermarket trolleys in between customers.

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The mobile machine sterilises the entire trolley in seconds before they are put back in the trolley bay for the next person. 

The clever machine has already had success in Germany, where it’s been used at supermarkets including Lidl and Aldi. 

It’s said that hundreds of machines are being sold each week in Europe as businesses discover it’s a quicker way to ensure the safety of its customers. 

Supermarkets in the UK are introducing strict hygiene measures with enhanced cleaning and rules for shoppers, but the company claimed that the machine is far more efficient than wiping down trolleys by hand. 

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Posting on its Facebook page, the company wrote: “Wiping down individual trolleys takes a lot of time, the Clean Trolley system is the future for our supermarkets and many other businesses!”

Wilkinson Mobile Catering owns a street food truck business and has had to furlough many of its staff, but is hoping to make the most of this new business idea as the sole distributor in the country. 

In an interview on BBC Radio Lancashire, Mike Wilkinson, Managing Director of Wilkinson Mobile Catering said the intention is to run it out to “every supermarket in the UK”.

However, he also hopes to use it for hospital stretchers, wheelchairs, and anything portable but not electrical that is handled by groups of people. 


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Wilkinson said it would minimise the risk going forward and would be fundamental even after the coronavirus pandemic in order to prevent or minimise any future health crises. 

It’s hoped that UK companies will buy the machine following the successful use of it in countries in Europe. 

The company has shared video footage which shows how the product works, with stacks of trolleys going through the machine at once much like a car wash. 

The atomised spray cleans the entire trolley including the wheels. 

The new shopping trolley washer only requires a garden hose in order to work. 

The fully portable machine uses a 10 litre container of the cleaning agent which then mixes with water. 

The company said it would easily last a full day at a supermarket, thanks to the way it cleans up to 30 trolleys at once. 

Wilkinsons has said it will donate 10 percent of all sales to the NHS charity fund. 

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