Covid crisis spurs packaging rethink

The second Covid wave has wreaked havoc as it drew attention to the shortcomings of oxygen supply, hospital beds and vaccines in the country. WhatPackaging? highlights how top brands are contributing their bit to mitigate the situation

15 May 2021 | By WhatPackaging? Team

ITC PSPD has supplied over 100 MT of liquid oxygen to the nearby hospitals in Telangana

Amazon brings 10,000 oxygen concentrators
Amazon joined hands with ACT Grants, Temasek Foundation and Pune Platform for Covid Response (PPCR) and other partners to airlift over 8,000 oxygen concentrators and 500 BiPAP machines from Singapore. According to the company, the medical equipment will be donated to hospitals and public institutions to augment their capacity to help Covid infected patients across multiple cities.

Amazon India is also procuring over 1,500 oxygen concentrators and other critical medical equipment that will be donated to hospitals and medical facilities in partnership with multiple non-profits, including Swasth, Concern India and impact organisations like ACT Grants and Sattva Consulting.

Coca-Cola commits Rs 50 crores
Coca-Cola in India has committed to donating Rs 50-crore to augment the nation’s effort in combating the crisis and containing the spread of the pandemic. Coca-Cola India will facilitate Covid vaccination, provide safety kits, create awareness and distribute beverages to India’s frontline workers.

In addition, the company’s bottling partners have arranged vaccination camps, supported community kitchens, provided relief material and ambulance support, donated mobile Covid beds, ventilators and oxygen concentrators throughout the nation.

Meanwhile, the company has created a Stop the Spread fund worldwide. According to the beverage major, this fund will be channelised towards facilitating vaccine distribution, Covid safety kits (PPE, masks, gloves, sanitiser) and creating awareness around vaccination and sanitary practices to contain the spread of the pandemic.

Hindustan Unilever's HO2PE mission
Hindustan Unilever is airlifting over 4,000 oxygen concentrators into India to address the acute shortage of medical oxygen. The company is partnering with KVN Foundation and Portea to make the O2 concentrators available to patients promptly and efficiently. The company said as part of the initiative, titled Mission HO2PE, the 4,000 concentrators will be sent to most affected cities, such as Delhi, Lucknow and Bengaluru, among others. Portea will have access to 3,000 concentrators, which will be provided free of charge to patients. The remaining will be donated by HUL to hospitals in 20 locations across India.

Besides this, the company is facilitating and covering the cost for vaccination of its outer core of around 300,000 people, including those who work for suppliers, distributors as well as Shakti Ammas in rural areas. The FMCG major has also set up isolation facilities across more than 30 of its manufacturing units – most of them located in rural parts of India. Apart from O2 concentrators, HUL will also be providing ventilators and other medical equipment for hospitals, including in rural areas.

IIP converts hostel buildings to Covid centres
The Indian Institute of Packaging (IIP) has handed out two of its hostel facilities located in Andheri's MIDC area to be converted into quarantine centres. Not only the hostel building facility, but also his bungalow has been offered by Dr Tanweer Alam, director of IIP, for staff accommodation.

ITC PSPD supplies oxygen in Telangana hospitals
Paperboard major ITC is airlifting a large number of oxygen concentrators, as its paper unit in Bhadrachalam has commenced supplying oxygen to neighbouring areas. The company said it is committed to its fight against the pandemic and will continue to explore other avenues to help address the challenges emerging during these trying times.

The company has supplied over 100 MT of liquid oxygen to the nearby hospitals in Telangana and it said more will be supplied in the coming days.

PepsiCo partners with SEEDS  
The PepsiCo Foundation has partnered with the not-for-profit organisation Sustainable Environment and Ecological Development Society (SEEDS) to unveil a community relief outreach programme. As part of the partnership, SEEDS will drive Covid-19 vaccinations for the community at large, set up Covid care centres equipped with beds and medical facilities, including oxygen cylinders.

In addition, oxygen concentrators will also be provided to the Central government for distribution to various hospitals. The entire community relief programme will be rolled out across the country with a special focus on five states, Maharashtra, Punjab, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh and Telangana.

The company said as part of the initiative, awareness drives will also be organised across various states to promote vaccination amongst the population at large. These sessions will be conducted in partnership with NGOs, including SEEDS.