Austrian fiber specialist Lenzing reports that it has taken over management control of Hygiene Austria on March 3. Stephan Sielaff, chief technology officer at Lenzing, has been appointed as an additional managing director at Hygiene Austria to assist in resolving the issues that had arisen over the last few weeks. In addition, Lenzing has engaged an external forensics team with immediate effect.

The producer of protective masks made negative headlines because of suspicions that masks produced in China were mislabeled and sold as Austrian products. As a result, there were official searches at Hygiene Austria and, according to the Austrian broadcasting corporation ORF, purchasers of the masks started investigating whether they could also be affected. In midweek, Hygiene Austria denied the accusations. “Correct”, however, was that “to compensate for a peak in demand,” a contract manufacturer in China had been brought in, ORF reported.

Hygiene Austria was founded in April 2020 by Lenzing (50,1 percent) and Palmers Textil (49,9 percent), creating a modern production infrastructure for up to 12 million protective masks per month.