Brooks Brothers To Manufacture Up To 150,000 Surgical Masks Per Day at N.C., Other U.S. Factories
Apr 01, 2020 09:00AM
By David Dykes
Retailer Brooks Brothers said it will convert its New York, North Carolina and Massachusetts factories from manufacturing ties, shirts and suits to making masks and gowns in response to the urgent call from the White House and other state and local leaders for medical supplies.
Brooks Brothers said it plans to use these facilities to produce up to 150,000 masks per day on an ongoing basis,to help increase access to protective gear for health care workers and others battling the spread of COVID-19 at the nation’s hospitals and other facilities. The company will also be producing gowns.The company's North Carolina facility is in Garland.
Over the past two weeks, the company said it has been in direct contact with federal and state officials, task forces, several major hospital systems, and other municipalities and organizations.
Brooks Brothers has partnered with Stop the Spread, a coalition of volunteer CEOs working in Washington, D.C. and around the U.S. to catalyze actions and support the government in response to COVID-19.
The company said it also has partnered with universities recognized as centers for excellence for both textiles and technology in order to develop the prototypes. Brooks Brothers has been working closely with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to expedite the approval process, company officials said.
“We consider this a duty, and part of our DNA at Brooks Brothers,” said Brooks Brothers CEO Claudio Del Vecchio. “These are challenging times that are impacting us all. We are deeply grateful to the medical personnel at the front lines who are fighting the pandemic, and we are honored to do our part and join our peers in retail to provide protective masks that our health care system critically needs. I also want to thank our dedicated manufacturing employees who are returning to work as we reopen our factories to make this possible.”
In addition to producing up to 150,000 masks per day, Brooks Brothers expects to soon begin producing protective gowns.
Brooks Brothers’ factory personnel who will be making masks are set to return to their jobs following a two-week precautionary self-quarantine.
The company said it is closely following public health guidance and will enforce federal guidelines for sanitation and social distancing on-site at all facilities to protect employees.