ODLO, a company known for functional sports underwear, running, cycling and other outdoor sports clothing, is converting its Portuguese production facilities to manufacture protective face masks.
As the global supply of protective medical equipment dwindles, demand from hospitals, nursing services and other front-line workers is growing. Also, with many governments either requiring or recommending face mask use by their citizens, public availability of safe face masks is becoming of critical importance to society’s effort to curb the spread of coronavirus.
True to ODLO’s #zeroexcuses approach to sports and business, the brand attacked the face mask challenge and established an internal “COVID-19 Action” task force to explore how it could help people stay healthy amidst the coronavirus pandemic. The obvious first-step for the task force was to convert the existing production facilities in Portugal to manufacture the much-needed face masks.
ODLO face masks meet the requirements of the directive EU/2017/745 and are suitable for use in health care. Although the certification is still pending due to the urgent and short-term realization of the project, the masks have been successfully tested according to DIN EN 14683 and meet the required criteria.
According to ODLO CEO, Knut Are Høgberg, “Sustainability and social responsibility have been at the heart of ODLO’s corporate culture since the company was founded 70 years ago. As a quality-conscious Swiss company with a long family tradition, it is particularly important for us to run our business in line with these principles. We take our social and environmental responsibilities seriously, and in the midst of a pandemic, converting our production facilities to manufacture face masks is simply the responsible thing to do to help flatten the curve.”
Transitioning from producing sports clothing to face masks, ODLO’s long-standing and highly-skilled factory employees are applying their extensive experience with breathable fabric materials to immediately address the manufacturing requirements of protective face masks on a large scale. ODLO’s quick-drying masks are made of polyester with a fleece insert of polyamide/polyester: materials the brand has years of experience working with. They have an antibacterial finish, are OEKO-TEX certified free of harmful substances and can be washed up to 50 times at 60 °C, reliably killing any viruses.
Medical facilities, hospitals, nursing homes, mobile services, etc. will be supplied directly from ODLO with immediate effect.
Private individuals can purchase masks from the beginning of May via the ODLO online shop at www.odlo.com.
“We care. We act. We share.” is ODLO’s corporate social responsibility statement. The brand is proud to share its breathable fabric expertise and safe manufacturing practices to support the fight against COVID-19 and hopes its face masks can help people stay healthy so we can get back to doing what we all love: sports in the outdoors. For further questions, feel free to contact the ODLO COVID-19 Action task force at email@example.com.