Illustration for article titled Now there’s a face mask with a mouth hole for eating. What could go wrong?
Screenshot: Reuters (YouTube)

Among the many, many hurdles restaurants are facing in their attempts to reopen in a COVID-19 world is the issue of face masks. We know that even with protective measures and social distancing, a single person can spread coronavirus to an entire restaurant via its air conditioning system, so wearing masks inside dining rooms is a necessity. But if people need to wear masks to keep other patrons safe, how are they supposed to eat? An Israeli company has developed a possible solution: a mask with a remote controlled mouth hole.

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Yesterday Asaf Gitelis, vice president of Tel Aviv based Avtipus Patents and Inventions, demonstrated the invention to Reuters, explaining how it uses a lever to open a small slot to allow food to pass through. “The mask will be opened mechanically by hand remote or automatically when the fork is coming to the mask,” said Gitelis. “Then you can eat, enjoy, drink and you take out the fork and it will be closed, and you’re protected against the virus and other people sitting with you.”

The company has already submitted a patent and intends to bring the product to market within months. To see the mask in action, check out the video below:

Allison Robicelli is The Takeout staff writer, a former professional chef, author of three books, and The People's Hot Pocket Princess. Questions about recipes/need cooking advice? Tweet @Robicellis.

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