It’s a big week for condoms: Not only did the FDA grant approval for the first condom designed specifically for anal sex, but we also got a bullish prediction about condom sales from the world’s biggest condom producer. As pandemic restrictions ease, the producer that supplies over 5 billion condoms per year for brands like ONE Condoms and Durex, is gearing up for a condom bonanza.
Masks may be coming off, but that doesn’t mean we necessarily need to be dropping all barriers. Avoid infection by putting protection on your erection!
By humans, for humans, to prevent humans — In an earnings report released Monday, Malaysia-based condom manufacturer Karex said that “the recommencement of social interactions that have been absent for over a year in many countries is expected to drive the immediate term demand for condoms and lubricants.”
The company saw a decline in demand in the past two years as pandemic restrictions reduced interactions — which surprised Karex. CEO Goh Miah Kiat had anticipated such a strong demand for condoms that in March 2020 he warned of potential global condom shortages... that never really came. Now that more countries are relaxing restrictions, he predicts that things will be looking up for the company.
Condom science has been developing since 1564, when Fallopius described the use of linen sheaths over the penis to prevent syphilis spread, and while not every advance is a hit (looking at the elusive spray-on condom), they’ve certainly made a mark on society.
But they’re not everyone's favorite. The Guttmacher Institute finds that condom use is falling (though contraceptive use, in general, is on the rise). Meanwhile, the CDC reported in 2021 that STDs reached an all-time high for the sixth year in a row and “hit racial and ethnic minority groups, gay and bisexual men, and youth the hardest.”