Global Fiber Technologies is doing what it can to ensure healthcare professionals have all the personal protective equipment they need. Recycling various types of used textiles into medical face masks is an integral part of this project.
‘Through our normal course of business of rejuvenating fibre from uniforms and other textile products and making commemorative shirts, we have developed a large inventory of fibres and fabrics,’ says company ceo Paul Serbiak. ‘At this moment, we have enough on hand to manufacture millions of masks.’
In fact, the company is finalising a custom design for a personal protective mask that is comprised of a reusable, washable lined mask and replaceable, disposable filter inserts. The entire mask is meant to provide 95% filtration of virus sized particles.
Various US hospitals have expressed interest in the design which is effective yet economical, due to the crossover of both reusable and disposable features. Serbiak estimates that the cost per use is about 50% less than that of typical disposable surgical masks.
Global Fiber Technologies typically transforms the used textiles into shirts, aprons and bags for various commercial parties. ‘We feel it is important that we use our stockpile of raw materials to help keep people safe during this outbreak period – or in the event of another outbreak down the road,’ Serbiak points out.
The work is being carried by company subsidiary Authentic Heroes Inc. Also, the venture will be donating 5% of earnings to charities supporting those ‘fighting on the front line’ during this crisis.
Company president Chris Giordano believes the market for personal protective products will remain ‘robust’ for years to come since the pandemic will likely have long term residual effects. A future scenario could include a mandate to wear masks in public settings.
‘We are not here for the short term,’ Giordana says. ‘After careful consideration we expect the market for personal protective equipment to represent a substantial portion of our business model.’
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