SEOUL, Mar. 28 (Korea Bizwire) — Sales of masks and other products that can mitigate the effects of fine dust have skyrocketed amid rising concerns over deteriorating air quality in the country, local retailers said Wednesday.
Sales of masks at GS25, one of South Korea’s leading convenience store chains, from Saturday to Monday jumped 914.5 percent compared to the same period a week earlier, according to its operator GS Retail Co.
South Korea has been grappling with worsening air quality every year, as clouds of fine dust particles cover the sky with a yellow haze.
Fine dust — particles smaller than 10 micrometers — can cause various respiratory ailments and undermine the body’s immune system.
eBay Korea Co., operator of leading online mall Auction, said sales of home appliances related to air pollution have also been rising in recent years.
Sales of clothes dryers at Auction from Feb. 26 to March 25 rose 294 percent on-year, and sales of air purifiers jumped 80 percent on-year during the cited period, the company said.
“Fine dust has been changing the geography of the home appliance industry,” an Auction official said. “Air purifiers and clothes dryers, which had been regarded as seasonal products, have now become essential ones.”