- LVMH to start producing hand sanitisers at its three perfume and cosmetics factory sites
The LVMH group, the owner of popular French luxury brands like Louis Vuitton (LV), Hennessy and Bulgari, in the time of crisis, induced by the Covid-19, has vowed to turn its three perfume and cosmetics factories into hand sanitisers’ production units, it will help in the fight against the coronavirus spread.
Fears of catching the coronavirus have sparked a demand for hand sanitisers not only in Europe but across the world, encouraging different companies to involve in product manufacturing. Hand sanitisers can promptly reduce the number of microbes on hands in many situations and subsequently lead to reduce chances of contamination. LVMH, the luxury goods group stated that the gel would be delivered free-of-cost to French hospitals, specifically in 39 public hospitals in Paris. The group expects the production of twelve tonnes of hand sanitiser to be ready by the end of this week.
- UK chemical manufacturer plans to build two hand sanitiser factories in 10 days
In the UK, INEOS, one of the world’s largest chemical companies, announced its plan to build two hand sanitiser production plant in 10 days as part of the initiative to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
The announcement came on Tuesday, 24 March 2020, in which the manufacturer stated its intention to produce 1 million bottles of hand sanitiser per month from the manufacturing units planned to be set-up in Middlesbrough, United Kingdom and Germany.
The UK’s private company has further pledged to provide free supplies to NHS hospitals in the time of crisis with the general public being able to buy sanitiser bottles through retail outlets across Europe. This comes in light of the critical shortage of hand sanitisers in Europe amid the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak.
INEOS has already ramped up its operations to deliver its products for essential medical use and care services, as it is considered worldwide that one of the major contagion pathways for COVID-19 is hand to mouth. Sanitisation of hand could, however, help prevent the spread of the virus to a great extent.
Moreover, the government has released an order to limit the pricing of hand gel as some retailers were reportedly trying to mint money by charging extra money from buyers. The cost has now been fixed to a maximum of three euros for 100ml bottle.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe, founder and chairman of INEOS, stated that it has become increasingly evident that infection travelling through hands to mouth is a substantial source of coronavirus contagion. INEOS is a leading European producer of two key raw materials needed for sanitisers, and the company will build two factories in the UK and Germany in the period of 10 days to ensure substantial supplies.
The company further informed about product specifications, stating that sanitisers would be produced according to the World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines and be particularly designed to kill viruses and bacteria. INEOS intends to produce both the popular “pocket bottle” and standard hand sanitisers.
CEO Jim Ratcliffe concluded that INEOS is well-equipped with enormous resources and manufacturing skills. The company stays absolutely committed to playing its part in the battle against coronavirus.
INEOS is Europe’s biggest producer of two core components of hand sanitiser, ethanol and isopropyl alcohol (IPA). The company’s products purify the public drinking water and are also essential in the manufacturing of several healthcare products like ventilators, rubber gloves, PVC saline drips, syringes and medical tubing.
- Diverse sector companies coming to support in the fight against novel coronavirus
In this crucial time, when the coronavirus pandemic has caused the life-and-death struggle across the globe with the worst impact on Europe, many diverse sector companies are coming forward to aid the virus containment.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson had asked aerospace and automotive manufactures to get involved in the production of ventilators in a national effort of reducing the spread of the virus. On a conference call with companies like Airbus, Rolls Royce and Jaguar Land Rover, Johnson discussed the national challenge of facing the shortage of ventilator and the support required in terms of skills, expertise or manufacturing of the components.
According to UK Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), presently there are 5,900 ventilators with NHS, but in case the situation gets worse there could be a requirement of as many as 20,000 ventilators, more than 3 times what is at present with the NHS.
Ventilators are the machines used to sense patients’ breath in order to provide assistance in the form of mandatory ventilation (breathing on behalf of the patient) and pressure support when a patient stops breathing. The media reports read that the standard blueprint of ventilators’ design has been sent across with the government opting for existing designs that could be mass-produced rapidly.
Smiths Group, which is already a producer of portable ‘paraPac’ designed ventilators, is reportedly in talks with the government to help manufacture 5,000 ventilators over the period of the next two weeks. Headquartered in London, Smiths Group is a British engineering company, which operates across 50 countries through its five core segments- Smiths Medical, John Crane, Smiths Detection, Flex-Tek and Smiths Interconnect.
Whereas, the other designer of ventilators, Penlon has promised to deliver alternative ventilator solution through its Penlon Nuffield 200 Anaesthetic Ventilator, which is positioned as a quick and simple ventilator that could function without the requirement of electrical power. Oxfordshire-based Penlon believes that it would be unrealistic to ask non-specialist manufacturers to make ventilators, stated media report.
Aircraft manufacturer Airbus is showing effort to build ventilators and offer support in 3D-print parts and assembly of machines for distribution around the country. The carmakers like McLaren and Nissan are also reported to help the government in producing parts of ventilator machines using their existing facilities.
- Coronavirus Deaths and Confirmed Cases Statistics
Meanwhile, in Italy, the European epicentre of the outbreak, the number of confirmed cases has increased to 63,927 with total 6,077 deaths reported from COVID-19 as on 25 March 2020 (Source: WHO Dashboard). Italy ranks second in terms of the total number of confirmed cases after China, which is on top with 81,767 cases reported to date. The number of deaths in France has also increased to 860, with the confirmed cases surging to 19,615. In Spain and Germany, the number of confirmed cases is reported at 33,089 and 29,212, while the total number of deaths have been 2,182 and 126, respectively.