An N-95 mask is seen in Toronto on Friday, March 27, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)

New Kelowna medical manufacturer to make 20 million masks per month

Breathe Medical Manufacturing’s mask output is planned to increase to 40 million by the summer

A Canadian medical supplies manufacturer is bringing its operations to Kelowna to produce medical masks.

Breathe Medical Manufacturing Ltd. has plans to begin producing as many as 20 million masks per month at its 30,000 square-foot facility in Kelowna’s industrial area near Lake Country. That number could increase to 40 million by this summer.

“As evidenced by the current pandemic we are experiencing, the global shortage of good quality and readily available medical supplies has created a massive problem for Canada, as well as many other countries abroad,” said Warren Jones, the president of Breathe.

“Although China is currently the largest supplier of facial masks in the world, their performance as of late has left most of the world wanting for more. The fact is that Canadian retailers, distributors, corporations and citizens, need a stable and reliable supply chain they can count on.

Jones applauds local companies for stepping up to both create and donate masks at a time people needed them most.

“However, our goal is to take things a few steps further,” said Warren Jones.

The company will soon be looking to hire about 30 people.

“Breathe Medical Manufacturing has heard the cry, and we are pulling out all stops to answer the call. We believe it is high time for Canada to secure its own, Canadian manufactured supply of necessary protective equipment that our front-line workers and citizens need and deserve.”

READ MORE: ‘Phased return’ to school for Central Okanagan teachers

READ MORE: City of Kelowna proposing tax hike slash to 2.05%

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