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Scicon switches from making cycling shorts and bags to masks and protective eyewear

Italian firm in badly affected area repurposes production line in response to global demand

Joseph Delves
30 Mar 2020

Scicon is one of many producers of high-end cycling kit located in the north of Italy. A region badly affected by the current coronavirus outbreak, it’s now following the example of many other companies in the textile sector and converting its entire production line to help create protective equipment.

Claudio Fantin of ASG Group, which owns Scicon explains, 'We decided to try our best to help. Technical cycling fabrics are ideal for masks, while sports eyewear can also be very effective screens for protecting the eyes from saliva.

'We urge all apparel manufacturers to follow our model and are ready to provide as much insight as we can to help - from drawings, data sheets and information on materials, to tips and suggestions for anyone that wants to follow suit.'

In an attempt to bring new products to the market as quickly as possible, Italy has waived many of the regular testing and certification protocols.

As such, Scicon’s new respirator mask complies with the conventional FFP1 standard, even if it is not currently approved as such - as timelines don’t allow for rapid testing.

Previously more often spotted in the pro peloton, Scicon will also be providing a repurposed version of its AeroTech eyewear equipped with clear lenses.

Home to much of Italy’s fashion and sportswear manufacturing capability, the north of the country has been one of the world’s most badly affected areas. Before recently being overtaken by the USA, for some time Italy had more cases than anywhere else, including China.

Scicon joins nearby firm Santini in shifting its capacity from cycling kit to personal protective equipment.

While initially slow to go into lockdown, Italy has since provided a model of how to behave during the crisis, something verified by my sister who lives in Bolzano.

For some Italian style coronavirus advice, watch these local mayors holding it down while providing light relief and sound guidance.

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