As part of the global effort to combat the outbreak of COVID-19, Burberry is dedicating its resources to support those impacted by the disease and prevent further infection.
By leveraging their global supply chain, supporting world-leading research and providing funding to increase food supplies, Burberry will help to meet the most immediate medical and community needs, while supporting the development of a longer-term solution to the global pandemic.
The luxurious fashion house is taking several initiatives in helping those affected by the virus. As for now they are working to facilitate the delivery of surgical masks, non-surgical masks and gowns for use by medical staff and patients.
In addition, they are utilizing their global supply chain network to fast-track the delivery of over 100,000 surgical masks to the UK National Health Service, for use by medical staff as the Coronavirus pandemic is spreading fast in Europe.
Burberry also stopped production at one of their factory as they are retooling the trench coat factory in Castleford, Yorkshire, to make non-surgical gowns and masks for patients. Production and distribution will be subject to approval from the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
To fight off the virus, the company are funding research into a single-dose vaccine developed by the University of Oxford that is on course to begin human trials next month. The University has one of the world’s best track records in emergency vaccine development, with past success in fighting Ebola and MERS.
They are also donating to charities including FareShare and The Felix Project, dedicated to tackling food poverty across the UK. With pressures mounting on food supplies, the charities are further expanding efforts to help those struggling as a result of the outbreak. This includes setting up community produce hubs, delivering food to young people who rely on free school meals and increasing pre-packed food parcels to help food banks cope with demand and maintain social distancing policies.
Marco Gobbetti, CEO, Burberry said of these actions: “In challenging times, we must pull together. The whole team at Burberry is very proud to be able to support those who are working tirelessly to combat COVID-19, whether by treating patients, working to find a vaccine solution or helping provide food supplies to those in need at this time. COVID-19 has fundamentally changed our everyday lives, but we hope that the support we provide will go some way towards saving more lives, bringing the virus under control and helping our world recover from this devastating pandemic. Together, we will get through this.”
University of Oxford’s Head of Medical Sciences, Professor Gavin Screaton, commented: “We are delighted with Burberry’s generous support for the University’s research into a vaccine for COVID-19. Burberry’s gift is an example of forward-thinking corporate philanthropy that complements and bolsters government and other investment in Oxford’s leading global talent in this field. Donations like this have real and rapid impact, allowing us to be agile in our response, to accelerate this time-critical research.”