More than 1,000 coronavirus vaccine shots went to waste in Japan after storage temperatures deviated from a required range due to a freezer malfunction, the health ministry said, Report informs referring to Reuters.

Japan became the last member of the Group of Seven leading industrialized nations to begin its vaccination drive against COVID-19 on Feb. 17.

It has so far received three shipments of the vaccine developed by Pfizer Inc and BioNTech, comprising around 1.4 million shots.

The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine must be stored at a temperature of around minus 75 Celsius (minus 103 Fahrenheit).

A medical institution reported that the freezer malfunction had occurred over the weekend, rendering 172 vials of the vaccine, or 1,032 doses, useless, the ministry said.