ONE FILTER AT A TIME
By Angela Garrity, Guest Blogger
Across the globe, companies are pivoting their regular means of manufacturing and business to assist in efforts to combat the COVID-19 crisis. For Melitta, they are no exception to stepping up to the challenge of the pandemic.
The New York Times reported the news of the German original paper coffee filter maker who retooled their usual coffee filter into making face masks.
“The ergonomics of the thing, the fact that the filter fits exactly over mouth, nose, and chin is so unbelievable that you might call it a gift from heaven,” Katharina Roehrig, a managing director at Melitta, which is based in a small city in northwestern Germany.
The company also owns Wolf PVG, which produces air filters and vacuum cleaner bags. This decade long knowledge of manufacturing three-ply microfiber items became instrumental in crafting medical supplies as supplies dwindled in Europe in March.
The article explains, “The coffee-filter-shaped masks are produced on the same machine as the filters found in grocery store aisles. Although they physically resemble a normal coffee filter, the masks are made from a different material (making them unsuitable for brewing coffee).
The material, a triple layer of melt-blown and spun-blown microfiber has a Bacterial Filtration Efficiency certification of above 98 percent, a value comparable to simple medical masks.”
Melitta has produced about 10 million masks during the first month and are awaiting approval of the coffee filter face masks by the German government as a medical product.