Mondi adapts production line in Germany to make straps for face masks
The plant was able to repurpose one of its manufacturing lines to produce a three-layer, laminated strap that binds a stretchable plastic film between layers of soft, nonwoven material.
Global packaging supplier Mondi has converted a production line at its Gronau plant in Germany to manufacture elastic straps for face masks used by both medical professionals and consumers against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Gronau plant, part of Mondi’s Personal Care Components business, typically focuses on manufacturing materials used in hygiene products such as baby diapers, adult incontinence pads and feminine care items. However, the plant was able to adapt one of its manufacturing lines to produce a three-layer, laminated strap that binds a stretchable plastic film between layers of soft, nonwoven material.
The straps, which Mondi supplies to its mask-making customers on a reel, are then cut and attached to each side of a mask, which can loop comfortably over the user’s ears to hold the mask in place.
This elastic material replaces a rubberized band that holds the mask to the face, thereby increasing the operational speed of the machines in comparison to rubber which is slower.
“Mondi Gronau is working to provide straps that will fit more than one billion nonwoven face masks,” said Dr. Michael Trinkaus, director of R&D and application engineering for Mondi’s Personal Care Components division. “As there is an increasing demand for such types of face masks, we are building up our capability to meet this demand. By producing this soft elastic strap, we are able to produce more volume to meet growing demand.”
Mondi also operates a plant in Taicang, China, that laminates film made in Gronau to make nonwoven hygiene products similar to those manufactured in Germany.