GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – Green Bay’s Carnivore Meat Company has donated the use of its ultraviolet (UV) sterilization machine to sanitize and disinfect much needed personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare and public service workers in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
According to Carnivore Meat Company, a single mask may be sterilized up to five times with the UV machine. The full utilization of the machine’s capacity could yield up to 1.4 million clean masks per week.
The company adds that the machine lessens the need for new masks, potentially resulting in $2 million in savings each week.
Lanny Viegut, Carnivore Meat Company’s CEO and owner, says he got the idea to donate the use of the machine after hearing President Donald Trump’s March 21 press briefing where he challenged Americans to figure out how to get equipment sanitized to protect healthcare workers.
“I immediately thought of the brand-new UV sterilization chamber we had available, and that the machine could surely be used to sterilize masks,” stated Viegut. “I contacted the CEO of a local health care provider and offered the use of our equipment for as long as needed.”
Carnivore Meat Company says the machine was transferred to a designated site for set-up, training, and testing in preparations to become a fully operational PPE sterilization facility.
“All this was accomplished in less than a week! It was quite an effort and the end results are amazing,” Viegut says. “The UV machine did its job, resulting in masks that are sanitized and ready for use by healthcare and first responders.”
According to Carnivore Meat, the facility became the first-known fully operational, in-line UV PPE sterilizing operation in the United States on March 29.