Sarasota urn company grows with COVID-19 death toll

Urns are only 6 pounds and 200 cubic inches, but they pack a massive dose of reality.

"It is an unusual business," said Andrea Bogard LeBlanc, the owner of Bogati Urn Company. "But it is a much-needed business."

She has never seen so many going out the door of her Sarasota warehouse.

"A lot of times, funeral homes will order as needed for a family," said LeBlanc. "But in this case, they have actually bought in bulk."

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Before the pandemic, they were selling 5,000 pieces a week. Now, it's up to 7,500 and $2.8 million in revenue has become $4.2 million.

Seven employees have become 17.

And they went from a 14,000 square-foot warehouse to 31,000 square feet.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says since the pandemic started, there have been up to 783,000 more deaths than normal. 

Urns displayed at Bogati Urn Co. in Sarasota

MORE: Florida tops 26,000 COVID-19 cases, new record high

With an average high of 227 Floridians dying every seven days just of COVID, a Bay Area crematorium told FOX 13 it is at capacity.

"I am in the process myself of looking for a refrigeration truck," said TJ Cohen of Cremations of Greater Tampa Bay.

Sarasota Memorial Hospital says it is making arrangements for a second refrigeration truck for its morgue.

Florida reported 26,203 new COVID-19 infections and nine deaths Tuesday, according to data posted Wednesday by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A seven-day "moving" average for infections was 21,604 cases as of Tuesday. 

42,731 people have died in Florida due to the disease since the start of the pandemic in early 2020, according to federal government data.