Kardish launches the Ottawa Mask, a mask created in partnership by CHEO and EcoEquitable
The masks already sold out twice before launch. All profits will be donated to CHEO.
May 20, 2021
OTTAWA — Kardish Health Food Centre, Ottawa’s largest health food retailer, today announced that they launched the exclusive Ottawa Mask. This high performing mask was developed by CHEO researchers, in partnership with EcoEquitable and Dessuis, as a means to help reduce community transmission of COVID-19.
“The Ottawa Mask gives people an ideal alternative to un-tested cloth masks and one-time surgical masks designed for use in health care,” says Dr. Dayre McNally, a CHEO intensive care physician and researcher. “We wanted to provide a mask that was reusable, and yet had a known and validated level of protection.”
In contrast to most cloth masks widely available for public use, the Ottawa Mask well exceeds the 50% particle filtration efficiency recently specified by the American Society of Testing Materials for a level 2 consumer/community mask. In contrast to surgical masks, the Ottawa Mask was specifically developed to be re-used, and retains particle filtration efficiency above 70% after 50 launderings. Finally recognizing the importance of both fit and comfort, the mask has undergone both quantitative fit and user testing at CHEO.
The masks cost $20 to make and sell for $25. This means that $5 of each mask is donated to CHEO, supporting CHEO’s excellence in pediatric care, research, and education.
The masks are manufactured in Canada by EcoEquitable. EcoEquitable is a small, dynamic social enterprise supporting people in need—especially women new to Canada—looking to develop connections with their community and increase their financial stability through sewing training.
The masks are available at all Kardish locations.
“The Ottawa Mask is manufactured to the highest standards,” says Anouk Bertner, Executive Director of EcoEquitable. “This partnership is an amazing example of how private industry, social enterprise, and scientific institutions can work together to improve Canada.”
“Kardish is always looking for ways to support our community. We are excited to offer our community these top-quality masks that give back to CHEO, support EcoEquitable, and protect against COVID-19,” says Robert Assaf, President of Kardish Food Centre. “We’re looking forward to having these masks in our stores and making a difference during a difficult time.”
About Kardish Health Food Centre
Kardish Health Food Centre is Ottawa’s leading health food retailer. Kardish, founded in 1979, is committed to making it easy for you to discover well-being solutions that work for you. With more than seven retail locations in Ottawa, Kardish makes it easy for you to access a wide selection of specialty health and bulk foods, gluten-free products, natural health and beauty aids, vitamins, and other natural health supplements. Kardish Health Food Centre has been recognized as an industry and community leader, winning the Ottawa Business Journal Employee’s Choice Award, the Best Ottawa Business Award, and the Canadian Health Food Association Award for Excellence in Retailing.
EcoEquitable is a charitable organization and social enterprise that supports newcomer women in developing the skills necessary for financial autonomy through sewing while greening the environment. EcoEquitable recycles over 10,000 lbs of textiles annually and supports the community in embracing slow fashion and a zero-waste lifestyle. They offer a wide range of sewing courses for all levels and sewing aspirations.