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Forfar-based textiles business Don & Low has acquired a machine to manufacture fabric used in the production of high-quality FFP3 face masks.

The Scottish Government, via Scottish Enterprise, has agreed to provide the company with up to £3.6m of financial support towards the £4.5m purchase, import and installation of the equipment.

Once the machine is operational, Don & Low will be one of a handful of companies in Europe capable of supplying the filter material used to make the respirator masks.

Minister for Trade, Investment and Innovation, Ivan McKee, said: “COVID-19 isn’t going away any time soon, so while we have enough masks to protect our frontline health and social care workers now, we are also taking a long-term view to build PPE manufacturing capability in Scotland to meet future needs.

“During these challenging times, it’s encouraging to see so many Scottish businesses quickly diversify their product lines and invest in new equipment to help us deliver what is needed when it’s needed.”

Colin Johnson, Director at Don & Low, said: “We are pleased to be supported in making this new investment that will allow us to use our existing expertise to address the shortages of these key materials during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.”

Linda Hanna, Managing Director at Scottish Enterprise, added: “The unprecedented demand for face masks has highlighted the fragility of existing global supply chains. Investing in this equipment alongside Don & Low will simultaneously boost domestic manufacturing and supply while creating export opportunities.

“Most importantly, it means the highest-grade medical face masks will continue to be produced for those who need them most.”

Kate Buckle
Article by Kate Buckle
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