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Japan clothing brand to sell washable, antibacterial kids masks to tackle virus

Masks for children to be sold by Miki Shoko Co. are seen in this image provided by the company based in Yao, Osaka Prefecture.

OSAKA -- Miki Shoko Co., known for its Miki House children's clothing brand, will start selling masks that contain antiviral and antibacterial fabrics for kids from April 6.

According to the company based in the city of Yao in Osaka Prefecture, western Japan, the masks are effective even after being washed 50 times. The move is in response to the high demand for masks amid a shortage of the items due to the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The masks are 100% cotton and are designed for children aged 2 to 5. A pack of two masks costs 1,800 yen, excluding tax. The product will only be sold via Miki Shoko's official website.

The use of antiviral and antibacterial components was co-developed with Kurabo Industries Ltd. A component initially developed for mouth-rinsing purposes was applied to the fabric. It can suppress the growth and reduces the volume of bacteria and viruses that can stick to the surface. The components have already been used for Miki House products such as children's underwear and bedding.

Miki Shoko has tried to make the masks nice and soft to prevent users from feeling stuffy. The effects of the antibacterial components also prevent the masks from having an unpleasant odor.

(Japanese original by Hiroshi Aihara, Osaka Business Headquarters)

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