Ford Buys 12 Freezers for COVID-19 Vaccine
With a vaccine for COVID-19 seemingly on the horizon at last, Ford Motor Company is gearing up with a purchase of a dozen ultra-cold freezers. As reported by Reuters on Tuesday, Ford intends to use the freezers to store doses of the vaccine for use by employees.
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“We’re doing this so that we can make the vaccine available to our employees on a voluntary basis,” said Ford spokeswoman Kelli Felker. Felker told Reuters that she wasn’t aware which company would be supplying Ford with the freezers, and the total purchase price was not disclosed. According to officials working in the freezer industry, a unit needed to store the vaccine at the correct temperature could cost anywhere between $5,000 and $15,000.
COVID-19 vaccine requires extreme cold for storage
Pfizer and Moderna are the leading developers of the COVID-19 vaccine. Both vaccines require extreme cold, with the former needing to be stored at minus 94 degrees Fahrenheit and the latter needing to be stored at minus 4 degrees F. The typical storage standard for vaccines is between 36-46 degrees F.
The expectation is that a COVID-19 vaccine will be publicly available by year’s end. Ford also expects to receive its freezers before the start of 2021.
Reuters notes that there has not been a significant number of outbreaks at U.S. auto plants since production restarted earlier this year. Ford reopened manufacturing in North America in May after a weeks-long shutdown and has only acknowledged a few temporary pauses in production due to positive tests among employees.
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