Luxottica and Fameccanica start the national production of face masks at PalaLuxottica in Agordo
The first batch of 3.5 million surgical masks produced by the plant has been delivered today
Milan and Agordo, 9 September 2020 – Luxottica and Fameccanica (Angelini Group) today announced the stable and large-scale start of production of surgical masks and the delivery of the first batch of over 3.5 million devices for the prevention of COVID-19, as part of the internal procurement plan launched in May by the Italian Government and coordinated by the Extraordinary Commissioner for Emergency Domenico Arcuri.
In order to respond adequately and on time to the Government's call, Luxottica has temporarily converted the PalaLuxottica - a center of aggregation and socio-cultural events for the area before the pandemic, close to the Group's historic headquarters in Agordo (BL), at the foot of the Dolomites - into a technologically advanced outpost for the production of face masks, for the benefit of the community.
Four special fully automated production lines were installed and started up on the site, designed and built in record time and commissioned by the Government and Commissioner Arcuri from the Italian headquarters of the Fameccanica Group. The machines guarantee the highest production speed on the market today and the necessary flexibility in the use of different material set ups.
The new Luxottica temporary production center will also be in operation at night for the duration of the state of emergency, to guarantee maximum daily production of up to about 3 million face masks. The plant will employ around one hundred people in shifts to ensure the correct operation of the processes and the necessary quality control.
In order to allow the installation and optimization of the complex machinery in the shortest possible time and to complete the authorization and certification procedures, two teams of specialized technicians from the two companies worked non-stop for two months, identifying needs and solutions in close collaboration and under the supervision of Commissioner Arcuri.
The lines will produce face masks entirely designed by the Commissioner's team, already authorized by the Italian National Institute of Health in accordance with the Decree Law of 27 March 2020 and subsequent amendments, with the maximum efficiency made possible by Luxottica structures. The supply of raw materials will be ensured by special supply agreements signed by the Government. On the other hand, Luxottica guarantees, with the technical support of Fameccanica and under the supervision of government structures, maintenance and proper management of the production cycle, and logistics services to deliver finished product batches to the central structures coordinated by the Extraordinary Commissioner.
“The agreement with Luxottica and Fameccanica to make our country increasingly autonomous in the production of surgical masks is a virtuous example of collaboration between private companies and public institutions at such a delicate time in the country’s life.
Italy, at the beginning of the pandemic, had almost no production of face masks. Today we are practically self-sufficient. As of Monday we will be the only country in the world to distribute 11 million face masks a day, free of charge, in schools,” comments the Extraordinary Commissioner for Emergency COVID-19 Domenico Arcuri.
“Luxottica has been committed since the beginning of the pandemic to protecting the health and safety of its people and communities. In this context, we have joined the request for support from the Italian institutions in charge of coordinating the national response to the emergency. We are proud of the results achieved so far and in particular, our face mask production unit has already been able to deliver the first 3.5 million devices to the Extraordinary Commissioner’s facility. Ours is a small, positive contribution that, put together with the contribution of many others, can make a difference in the recovery of our country,” comments Francesco Milleri, Vice President and CEO of Luxottica.
“In Fameccanica we immediately started with the design of these innovative production lines, which were immediately made available to the authorities in charge of the COVID-19 emergency management to allow a greater and faster production of protection devices. The project, strongly desired by our shareholders and made possible thanks to the total devotion of the dedicated team, has involved a great human, industrial and technological commitment. We hope that our contribution will make it easier to return to our work and study places, enabling us to tackle present and future challenges with more resources,” comments Alessandro Bulfon, General Manager of Fameccanica.
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