More plastics firms supply health workers fighting Covid-19
Plastics companies in the UK are continuing to play a vital role in supplying much-needed materials and supplies in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. While the British government, led by prime minister Boris Johnson, says the worst is over and as ministers prepare to announce later this week plans for the country to come out of lockdown, the UK’s death toll from Covid-19 is nearing 30,000. Johnson was himself hospitalised in April after contracting the virus.

Several plastics firms have already revealed their efforts to provide health authorities and frontline workers with the equipment needed to deal with the coronavirus (see of 16.04.2020). More companies are throwing their weight – and resources – behind efforts to increase the flow of supplies to those tackling the disease and its effects on people.

As in other parts of Europe, many of the UK companies are focusing on facial protective gear, such as food-to-go packaging manufacturer Rapid Action Packaging (London;, which has turned over its production line to make disposable face shields. The company said it had so far made 1m face shields, the first 65,000 of which had been earmarked for free distribution to care homes across the UK and Ireland. Injection moulder BEC Group (New Milton; has re-jigged its design, tool and injection moulding functions to produce visor shields for supplier Capit (Sudbury;, with prototypes being tested by the critical care team at the Royal London Hospital.

Another company involved in the production of visor face masks is AMB (Gateshead;, which is working with Unilever (London; and thermoformer Kingsmoor Packaging (Somerton; to design, tool and set up the mass production of single-use full face visors for NHS healthcare workers. AMB said it had provided all the material for free to run trials and would continue to offer APET medical safe material to produce 30,000 visors a day to meet current orders from hospitals and NHS trusts, aiming to increase daily production to 90,000 units.

Aquapak (Birmingham; said it has delivered nearly 50,000 water-soluble infection control bags to thousands of frontline NHS workers. According to the company, the environmentally friendly bags can be used for dirty clothing and put straight into the washing machine to limit exposure to the virus. The bags dissolve in the washing machine on a 60°C wash cycle.

Meanwhile, the British Plastics Federation (BPF, London; has published an updated version of its coronavirus guidance for companies. The latest edition of “Covid-19: Guidance on Good Manufacturing Practice” includes new sections on temperature testing, Riddor reporting (on injuries, diseases and dangerous occurrences regulations), a Covid-19 risk assessment template and an appendix of links for further information.
08.05.2020 [245035-0]
Published on 08.05.2020

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Date of print: 06.06.2023 02:22:10   (Ref: 771258542)
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