Saturday, April 1, 2023

The federal government is sitting on millions of hygiene masks

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Worth CHF 130 million

The federal government is sitting on millions of hygiene masks

Around 180 million FFP2 and hygiene masks worth around 130 million francs are stored in the army pharmacy’s warehouses. Almost 140 million of those will expire this year. A working group is looking for alternative uses.

Published: 17 minutes ago


Updated: 13 minutes ago

The federal government is looking for alternative uses for the numerous masks that are piling up in the army pharmacy warehouses. (icon picture)

The figures reported by the “SonntagsZeitung” come from the army pharmacy at the beginning of the year. The numbers and statements from the army were also available to the Keystone-SDA news agency on Sunday.

According to this, the federal government is trying to sell the masks that were procured in connection with the corona pandemic at market prices. The federal government does not destroy any goods of good quality, writes the army. Even if the material reaches its expiry date, alternatives for further use are still being sought. Or an attempt is made to extend the expiry date.

Masks that have expired and are no longer usable should be disposed of in the army pharmacy. The army was unable to provide an indication of how many protective masks with an expiration date of 2023 can be recycled or used.

value of 1.13 million

So far, the federal government has had to dispose of 2.2 million hygiene or FFP2 masks because of the expiration date. These were intended for troop deployments and had a value of CHF 1.13 million.

In addition, the army pharmacy recalled and destroyed around nine million masks as a precaution because mold was suspected. But these were masks from the time of the bird flu. At that time, around 30 million masks were bought.

According to the army, the masks usually have a shelf life of two to five years. The materials are subject to natural aging, so that over time the rubber bands become brittle or the filter performance of masks with filters is reduced. (SDA)

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