Authorities caught a store in Saraburi province in Thailand, “repackaging and reselling” used face masks.
Reports said six workers caught ironing the used face masks to sell them as new. A dealer sold them the used face masks.
Authorities also found a huge washing machine in the scene, which was being used to “clean” the masks.
One of the workers told Wihandaeng district chief officer Somsak Kaewasnathat “they got paid [sic] THB1 (roughly P1.63) per piece, while they recycled around 300 to 400 masks per day, per person.”
As a response, the government of Thailand will now control the distribution of face masks in the country.
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Its “Mask Management Center” would control the distribution of 38 million face masks that are manufactured in Thailand every month.
Thailand currently has 50 confirmed cases of COVID-19 infection at the time of writing, with a single fatality recorded.
Vice says that the prices of hand sanitizers have shot up to US$149 (about RM626) per bottle while disinfecting wipes are also available at a premium price of US$58.84 (about RM247). Folks over in China have also complained of recycled face masks.