Swiss funeral directors left with hundreds of extra coffins


Funeral directors in Switzerland are stuck with a surplus of coffins since the virus didn’t hit the country as hard as expected.

In March, Italy was the worldwide epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak. With Italy just a short drive over the mountains away from Switzerland, the Swiss were closely watching as death rates soared and Italian doctors had to choose who was going to get access to the limited amount of medical devices available and who wasn’t. 

Funeral directors in Switzerland saw the developments in Italy and decided to prepare for the worst. Takingno chances and  stocking up for the worse case scenario, but luckily for the Swiss despite the close proximity to Italy they were not hit as hard as their Italian neighbors. Today however, some of the funeral homes preppers are now left with hundreds of extra coffins.

Next level stocking up

Switzerland’s youngest undertaker Kevin Huguenin (21), of Huguenin Funeral, took stocking up to the next level. Under normal circumstances his funeral home has about 40 coffins, and during the height of the crises he ordered a tenfold ending up with a stockpile of 400 coffins. Huguenin’s funeral home had already serviced some corona victims at the beginning of the outbreak hence why he decided to stock up.

Years of stock

The Swiss coffin industry responded swiftly to the high demand in coffins and ramped up the production by producing almost twice as many coffins as normal. Coffin producer Beni Hochuli said in an interview that it might take years for Swiss funeral directors to get through the extra stocks of coffins that were purchased before and during the height of the pandemic. 

Hochuli who is also a funeral director believed that some of the companies bought hundreds of coffins as a panic reaction to the pandemic and even he thinks that some of these orders were a little extreme.

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