Toyota City, Japan, November 25, 2020―Toyota Motor Corporation (Toyota) announces the release of “Shodoku Taishi,” a foot-operated sanitizer stand that will be available through Toyota dealers nationwide, starting December 1. Amidst the spread of COVID-19, Toyota has leveraged its on-site monozukuri (manufacturing) capabilities and the Toyota Production System (TPS), which support its desire to create ever-better cars, to produce masks and face shields, develop vehicles that control the circulation of airborne droplets, and provide support to raise productivity in the production of protective gowns for healthcare use as part of the Toyota Group’s Kokoro Hakobu Project.*1
The foot-operated sanitizer stand that Toyota is launching at this time was first produced in early April under the initiative of employees at Toyota plants, who wanted to take action and prevent infections among their colleagues, where operation of production lines was unavoidably suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Based on a desire to contribute to society with the foot-operated sanitizer stands, the TPS professionals who participated in the medical protective gown project later became involved, commercialization was investigated, a prototype was brought to a healthcare institution, and a final model was determined based on the opinions of experts. The stand has been put into use at healthcare institutions and some dealers, as well as large commercial facilities and local government offices in Aichi Prefecture, and various opinions were received from customers regarding concerns about its effectiveness, sanitation, and weight. These opinions were reflected in subsequent versions, and the stand was modified so that parts can be removed for cleaning, to enable use by wheelchair users, and to reduce the weight from approximately 6 kg of the first version to about 3.2 kg (including the mat). Utilizing the technology and know-how it has cultivated in car manufacturing, Toyota has produced about 30 versions of prototypes and has made thorough improvements in preparation for its commercialization.
The development team insisted on creating a product that is easy for anyone to use and is good quality at an affordable price, and named the high-quality but inexpensive sanitizer stand the “Shodoku Taishi” (sanitizer ambassador). Monthly production of 2,000 to 2,500 units commenced at the Kamigo Parts Center, and sales through Toyota vehicle dealers and Toyota Rent-a-Lease dealers in Japan will commence on December 1.
These actions are a part of Toyota’s initiatives to provide goods and services that bring happiness to the people of the world in accordance with President Akio Toyoda’s declaration that “Toyota will earnestly strive to achieve the target of sustainable development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are being pursued by the international society with the aim of ‘leaving no one behind.'” In other words, it is an effort to “producing happiness for all.”*2 Toyota is committed to contributing to society through manufacturing of high-quality, inexpensive products that provide peace of mind and safety throughout the world.