A small structure that employs a third of disabled workers, La Coop des Masques launches its production of masks on Tuesday, with the objective of producing masks at a reasonable price.

No less than 1,500 citizen shareholders have already joined the cooperative.


Last spring, during the first wave of coronavirus, France saw the absence of factories to make masks on its soil.

Relocation projects were then launched to guarantee this "health sovereignty" that the government is trying somehow to ensure.

Illustration of this desire, the brand new machines of La Coop des Masques were put into operation in Grâces, near Guingamp, in the Côtes-d'Armor.

It is the realization of a project as social as it is industrial.

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This site has hired disabled, deaf and dumb workers.

Rémy still can't believe it: soon to be 22, the maintenance technician will be working with a deaf colleague, when he himself has Asperger's autism.

“Even people like me have the right to work. We have capacities!” He proclaims.

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Beneficial relocation?

Out of 21 employees at the Grâces plant, a third are disabled.

But beyond the social aspect, the cooperative has also set itself a mission: "We are going to show that we, the Bretons, the French, we know how to make masks", explains Séverine, another employee.

Masks made in France, as we used to do 40 kilometers from here, in Plaintel, until 2018. But three years ago the factory closed, making France dependent on foreign manufacturers at the time of the crisis. sanitary two years later.

Today, the idea is therefore to relocate, even if it means being a little more expensive.


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"A few cents" of difference

Will the masks actually be more expensive?

"We are on a gap at the finish which will be of the order of a few cents more in the mask," defends Guy Hascoët, the president of the cooperative.

"Hasn't the money saved by offshoring been redeployed simply for jobs that are elsewhere? The project is built to respond over time to securing production from local stakeholders . "

The famous actors of the territory are already numerous, since about fifty public and private partners, as well as 1,500 citizen shareholders, have already joined the cooperative.

The latter plans to produce at least 45 million units per year.