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Archive for the ‘COVID-19 Pandemic’ Category

Chargeurs Invests in Reshoring PPE Manufacturing to the US

Tuesday, October 13th, 2020

Company Creates More than 50 New Jobs in Ohio and Prioritizes the Hiring of Veterans

U.S. Representative Warren Davidson to Tour Facility as Congress Considers Bipartisan Legislation in Support of More Domestic Manufacturing

New York, NY – October 13, 2020 –The Chargeurs Group today announced a significant investment to expand the company’s U.S. manufacturing footprint to reshore personal protective equipment (PPE) production. The project will support Chargeurs’ newest division, U.S.-based Lainiere Health & Wellness, which will oversee the distribution, marketing and sales of all U.S.-manufactured PPE, including consumer-grade and medical-grade three-ply masks as well as 95-level respirator masks. The company will welcome U.S. Representative Warren Davidson at its Troy, Ohio, facility, Novacel Inc., which is creating more than 50 new jobs in the state and prioritizing the hiring of military veterans.

“Chargeurs is highly committed to developing new industrial capacity in the U.S. and to contributing to the country’s ability to manufacture PPE domestically,” said Michaël Fribourg, Chairman and CEO of Chargeurs Group. “We are grateful to all of our U.S. teams for their own longstanding commitment to success and we will continue to invest in our American manufacturing capability in the coming years.”

Chargeurs’ Ohio manufacturing facility is in a district represented by Representative Warren Davidson, a former Army Ranger who spent 15 years owning and operating manufacturing companies in Ohio. Congressman Warren continues to champion Ohio manufacturing and his tour of Chargeurs’ facility in Troy follows the introduction of bipartisan legislation by Ohio Senator Rob Portman and Michigan Senator Gary Peters that would incentivize more American companies to reshore production of PPE, reducing the U.S.’s reliance on foreign-made supplies. Should it be signed into law, the Make PPE in America Act would require the federal government to issue long-term contracts to companies to produce PPE in the U.S. The law would help provide manufacturers with the certainty they need to justify an investment in U.S. production.

“I love seeing this growth in manufacturing in southwest Ohio,” said Congressman Davidson, who represents Ohio’s 8th District. “As we’ve seen this year, keeping production inside the U.S. isn’t just important for the economy, it is critical to our national security. As a former manufacturer and Army Ranger, I’m also glad to see that hiring veterans is a priority for businesses. This is a win-win for all involved.”

When the COVID-19 pandemic revealed the risk of relying on foreign countries for PPE, Chargeurs began retrofitting part of its Troy, Ohio, manufacturing facility to help alleviate the domestic shortage of this critical equipment. The facility has begun with lines that can produce up to 2.5 million masks a month and will increase its production capacity in the coming months. Chargeurs also aims to produce Berry-compliant masks that meet the requirements of US military and government contracts by the end of the year.

“Chargeurs has invested significant capital in retooling our Ohio factory to reshore production of PPE to America,” said Angela Chan, CEO and President of Chargeurs*PCC Fashion Technologies. “We have been supplying raw materials to the PPE market for years, so it made perfect sense to pivot to manufacturing these products in the USA, especially given the severe shortages of this equipment our country has seen since the start of the pandemic.”

“We could not be prouder to leverage our technical expertise in materials and textiles to help fill the urgent need for these supplies and to bring jobs—including jobs for veterans—back to Ohio,” added Laurent Derolez, CEO of Chargeurs Protective Films and President of Novacel Inc.

“Reshoring production of PPE items like masks is critical to prevent a repeat of the supply chain breakdown that caused major shortages earlier this year,” said Mark McCormick, Manufacturing Growth Specialist at FASTLANE, West Central Ohio’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership, which is located within the University of Dayton Research Institute. “The investment that Chargeurs is making in Troy will help to ensure that Americans have the PPE they need while also creating additional jobs for our region.”

The Troy Facility Is Just One Example of Chargeurs’ Commitment to Made in the USA Manufacturing

Chargeurs is a France-based, family-owned diversified group operating as a worldwide leader in various businesses, including technical and performance textiles for the apparel and fashion industry, surface protection solutions, and business services and fabrication for the museum, cultural and entertainment sectors. Under Michaël Fribourg’s leadership, Chargeurs has been investing in the U.S. since 2015 to support a strong Made in the USA strategy.

In addition to its investment in the Novacel Inc. facility in Ohio (formerly known as Troy Laminating & Coating), Chargeurs has invested in manufacturing technologies in a number of its other U.S. facilities, including Main Tape Company Inc. in New Jersey, Walco Inc. in California, Lainiere de Picardie Inc. in Pennsylvania, Design & Production Incorporated in Virginia, and Chargeurs Wool USA Inc. in South Carolina.

Outdoor Research Earns FDA EUA Authorization for its US-Made Surgical Mask

Thursday, August 27th, 2020

Seattle-based company one of only four companies to achieve FDA authorization for U.S.-made surgical masks since pandemic began

SEATTLE, Wash. – Outdoor Research, LLC. (OR), a leading brand in the tactical and outdoor apparel industries, has earned U.S. Food and Drug Administration Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for its U.S.-made surgical mask. This authorization is designed to help strengthen the availability of key products needed during public-health emergencies. 

FDA EUA authorization follows quickly on the heels of National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety (NIOSH) approval in late July of OR’s Flat Fold Respirator Mask. NIOSH is a division of the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

Federal authorization of OR’s personal protective equipment (PPE) is the culmination of a months-long effort and represents two significant accomplishments. OR is one of only four organizations to achieve FDA authorization for U.S.-made surgical masks since the COVID-19 pandemic began. OR is also one of only six organizations to achieve expedited NIOSH certification to make healthcare respirators since the beginning of the pandemic. It is the only manufacturer within the outdoor and tactical spaces to do either. 

While many companies have entered the mask market temporarily by creating “face coverings” for general public use, OR has made a strategic commitment to expanding the company’s manufacturing capabilities to build advanced medical-devices, providing PPE to frontline healthcare workers during and after this current crisis. 

“With the onset of COVID-19, it quickly became clear that securing more reliable sources of medical PPE within the U.S. was critical to our country’s response to this pandemic,” said Jason Duncan, Head of Tactical, Innovation and CSR at Outdoor Research. “Because Outdoor Research already had long-established U.S. manufacturing capabilities and the know-how to quickly pivot to building new kinds of technical products, we are able to be part of the solution. These FDA and NIOSH authorizations speak to the success of that effort and to the vast amount of team work that has gone into this here at Outdoor Research.” 

In the past five months, OR invested in equipment and training to convert two floors of its Seattle manufacturing facility to produce two different types of N95 masks as well as medical-grade surgical masks. The company also produces the Berry Amendment-compliant Resolute Face Mask in Seattle. Along with investing in equipment, OR has hired more than 130 people to support mask production. These investments have resulted in the capability to produce up to 200,000 U.S.-made masks per day. To date, it has produced more than 3 million U.S.-made masks. 

OR is also producing reusable, technical and functional face masks for the general public. Like the Resolute Face mask, the Essential Face Mask Kit features an integrated and replaceable filter. 

Highly respected in the outdoor industry for developing functional solutions for extreme environments, OR has a history of successfully leveraging the best commercial market technologies to serve the needs of the armed services and first responders. Over the past two years the company has conducted a comprehensive review of the U.S. supply chain and is in active development with textile mills and materials providers to expand and elevate the capabilities of products that are 100% American-made.

OR has made significant capital investments designed to improve and modernize its Seattle factory. These investments have taken advantage of the company’s global knowledge of design, materials, and innovative manufacturing techniques while producing the next generation of outdoor and tactical products at its facilities. OR has continued to accelerate its product-development cycle, allowing the latest innovations to be rapidly fielded to the end user, helping increase the mobility and protection of soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, first responders, outdoor enthusiasts, and now the medical community.  

For more about Outdoor Research, visit www.outdoorresearch.com

ADS Federal Range Day 20 – CBR Multi-Purpose Wipe from M2DCON

Tuesday, August 25th, 2020

Pouches of the CBR Multi-Purpose Wipe from M2DCON were everywhere during Federal Range Day. These is a commercial equivalents to the US DoD Joint Service Equipment Wipe (JSEW/M334) were used to decon a wide variety of equipment between users. Even though the wipe is safe for personal hygiene, it has also been certified to neutralize against chemical (nerve, blister and other agents of concern) and biological (bacteria, viruses and spores) contamination.

Units and agencies can procure all products shown during ADS Federal Range Day by contacting ADS Inc.

Avon Protection Awarded Contract to Supply Respiratory Protection for NATO

Friday, August 21st, 2020

The NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) has awarded Avon Protection a 10 years contract to supply a complete CBRN personal respirator system. This procurement was led by Finland and Norway to establish technical requirements and demanding end user testing. The framework contract will enable NATO countries and partners to purchase Avon Protection’s market leading respirator system, based around FM50, full suite of filters, MP-PAPR, (Powered Air Purifying Respirator), ST53 (Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus) and accessories.

Understanding the operational flexibility required by NATO forces, Avon Protection have designed a unique modular respirator system to protect NATO troops in the most demanding environments. 

The FM50 respirator and a suite of filters are at the core of the respirator protection system selected by NSPA. Developed in conjunction with the United States Department of Defense to counter the multiple CBRN threats met in modern war fighting, anti-terrorist and peace-keeping operations, the FM50 is the most operationally proven and widely deployed battlefield respirator in the World.  

Commenting, James Wilcox, President, Military at Avon Protection, said:

“We are proud to be awarded this strategically important contract from NSPA and we look forward to working with NATO and their partners to continue to support world leading military capability. This contract demonstrates NATO‘s continued confidence and reliance on Avon Protection to supply product of the highest quality and performance to protect its troops for the forseeable future.”

Outdoor Research Achieves NIOSH Approval for US-Made N95 Flat Fold Respirator Mask

Monday, August 3rd, 2020

SEATTLE, WASH

Outdoor Research, LLC. (OR), a leading brand in the tactical and outdoor apparel industries, and the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety (NIOSH) announced this week that the U.S.-made N95 Flat Fold Respirator Mask from Outdoor Research has achieved NIOSH approval. 

Early on in the pandemic, Outdoor Research recognized the need for U.S. manufacturing to help address the national shortage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in the medical and defense communities. Because it already had significant onshore manufacturing operations in Seattle and Los Angeles, it was able to quickly adapt to address this shortage. 

Following conversions at its manufacturing facilities, Outdoor Research began producing the 100% American-made, Berry Amendment-compliant Resolute Face Mask and regulated Surgical and N95 respirator masks. It is also producing reusable, technical and functional face masks for the general public featuring integrated filters. All told, Outdoor Research has produced over 2.5 million masks to date.

Approval from NIOSH for the N95 respirator mask is a significant accomplishment. Outdoor Research is one of only 9 organizations to achieve expedited certification. While many companies have entered the mask market temporarily by creating “face coverings” for general public use, Outdoor Research has made a strategic commitment to expanding the company’s manufacturing capabilities to build advanced medical-devices, providing PPE to frontline healthcare workers during and after this current crisis. 

 “This pivot to medical PPE has required extreme dedication by an innovation team that was truly ‘purpose driven’ to help the end user,” said Jason Duncan, Head of Tactical, Innovation and CSR at Outdoor Research. “There was not a deep analysis of the business case but rather an answer to the question: what can our team do RIGHT NOW to help? You can’t motivate people to work this hard for this long without a purpose-driven goal. The NIOSH regulatory approval represents a success for a weary team that has been as obsessed with employee safety as they have with creating medical PPE. “ 

Highly respected in the outdoor industry for developing functional solutions for extreme environments, Outdoor Research has a history of successfully leveraging the best commercial market technologies to serve the needs of the armed services and first responders. Over the past two years the company has conducted a comprehensive review of the U.S. supply chain and is in active development with textile mills and materials providers to expand and elevate the capabilities of products that are 100-percent American-made.

Outdoor Research has made significant capital investments designed to improve and modernize its Seattle factory. These investments allow Outdoor Research to take advantage of the company’s global knowledge of design, materials, and innovative manufacturing techniques while producing the next generation of outdoor and tactical products at its facilities. OR has continued to accelerate its product-development cycle, allowing the latest innovations to be rapidly fielded to the end user, helping increase the mobility and protection of soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, first responders, outdoor enthusiasts, and now the medical community.  

For more about Outdoor Research, visit www.outdoorresearch.com

McHenry Introduces Bipartisan American PPE Supply Chain Integrity Act – Widens Berry Amendment Across Departments

Thursday, July 30th, 2020

Congressman Patrick McHenry (R-NC-10), joined Congressman Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-09) to introduce the American PPE Supply Chain Integrity Act. This bipartisan legislation will help end the United States’ reliance on Chinese-made personal protective equipment (PPE) and ensure that hospitals and frontline healthcare workers have access to a plentiful supply of high-quality American made PPE.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has made it painfully clear that the United States has failed its hospitals and frontline healthcare workers because of our over-reliance on Chinese-made PPE,” said Congressman McHenry. “By returning production of PPE to the United States, we will address the concerns raised by the current crisis while also incentivizing future investments in high quality PPE made by American companies, ensuring the long-term protection of our hospitals and frontline healthcare workers. I am glad to partner with Representative Pascrell to introduce a bipartisan bill that does just that.”

“The ongoing pandemic has exposed America’s over-reliance on personal protective equipment made in other countries. In a cruel twist of irony we are especially dependent on medical supplies made in China, where COVID-19 originated and whose totalitarian secrecy deepened the world crisis,” said Congressman Pascrell. “Our reliance on non-American-made PPE has crippled our response to COVID from the start. Even as we continue to fight the virus, we must use this painful lesson to change our behavior now. Our bipartisan American PPE Supply Chain Integrity Act will ensure we are investing in the best tools in the world at our disposal by making our own PPE right here in America. Encouraging production of medical supplies within our borders will ultimately help our economy, create jobs, ensure higher-grade equipment, and most important save American lives. This cannot wait until the next pandemic.”

“The U.S. textile industry would like to sincerely thank Congressman McHenry and Congressman Pascrell for introducing the American PPE Supply Chain Integrity Act, a bill we believe will create strong domestic procurement rules to incentivize investment and the onshoring of critical medical textiles,” said National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO) President and CEO Kim Glas. “Re-creating the successful domestic purchasing rules found in the Berry Amendment for all federal PPE purchases will not only help our country reduce its overreliance on China for PPE but also provide longer term support for our domestic supply chain that has supplied hundreds of millions of urgently needed items including face masks, isolation gowns and other needed PPE to frontline health care workers.”

“The American manufacturers who comprise the Warrior Protection and Readiness Coalition (WPRC) applaud the leadership of Congressman McHenry and Congressman Pascrell, demonstrated by their introduction of the American PPE Supply Chain Integrity Act,” said David Costello, Executive Director of the Warrior Protection and Readiness Coalition (WPRC). “This thoughtful legislation recognizes that a 100% American PPE supply chain is a matter of our national security and that ending reliance on unreliable, foreign made products is essential to ensure the health and safety of our nation. Our members are already investing their time and energy bolstering their domestic PPE capability and we look forward to working with Mr. McHenry and Mr. Pascrell to see this bill become law. “ 

Background: The American PPE Supply Chain Integrity Act implements the Berry Amendment standard of “100 percent of a product that is grown, reprocessed, reused, or produced in the United States” for the purchas of personal protective equipment (PPE) by Department of Defense, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, and the Department of Veterans Affairs. It also resets the contract level for the Berry Amendment from $250,000 to $150,000 to ensure more PPE is made in America.

AirBoss Defense Group Awarded Contracts Valued at Over $123 Million to Support the PPE Requirements of the U.S. Strategic National Stockpile and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Monday, July 27th, 2020

LANDOVER, MD (July 27, 2020) – AirBoss Defense Group (ADG), which is focused on the design, development and manufacturing of American-made, proven, commercially available personal protective equipment (PPE) that protects front-line workers and defense personnel, announced today that it has been awarded more than $123 million in contracts to supply PPE to U.S. Government agencies.

ADG been awarded a $121 million contract by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) – Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR), for 50,000 American-made FlexAir™ Powered Air Purifying Respirators (PAPR), 3,000,000 High Efficiency Filters and related accessories, including spare protective hoods, that will be part of the inventory for the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS). The FlexAir PAPR is designed to enable medical providers and first responders unencumbered protection over extended periods of time, while providing critical medical care. Deliveries under the contract to HHS are expected to be completed over the next nine months.

ADG further announced that the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has placed a sustainment order of $2.55 million with ADG for 60,000 high efficiency (HE) filters and 20,000 protective hoods to establish a contingency stockpile of equipment for the ongoing fight against COVID-19. This sustainment order supports the continued use by VA medical personnel of the over 10,000 American-made FlexAir PAPR systems that had been delivered to the agency earlier this year. Deliveries to the VA are expected to be completed over six weeks, beginning in mid-August.

Patrick Callahan, CEO of ADG, stated: “These new contracts underscore ADG’s ability to quickly respond to the COVID-19 crisis by focusing the entire company on delivering FlexAir PAPR systems to front-line workers across the United States. These orders to supply the PPE needs of the SNS and the VA will bolster U.S. capabilities to respond to public health hazards and ensure that the United States has a more robust domestic capability to support the federal response to future emergencies.”

“To this end, ADG has increased staffing to support the urgent needs of the U.S. federal government and is manufacturing PAPR systems at facilities in Landover, Maryland; Auburn Hills, Michigan; Scotland Neck, North Carolina; and Charleston, South Carolina,” Mr. Callahan noted.

The FlexAir PAPR system is a compact, lightweight respirator system powered by an onboard battery in a waist-mounted blower, designed and manufactured in the United States.  The flexible design permits the use of two high-efficiency particulate filters that are designed to provide a 99.7% protection level against particulates, aerosols and biohazards, including the COVID-19 virus.

The PAPR order for the SNS follows an earlier Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) order for 100,000 PAPR systems that was placed to respond to the immediate threat posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. ADG has since successfully delivered over 90% of the initial order and remains on track to complete this original contract on time, by the end of July 2020. Additional future follow-on orders for sustainment filters, hoods and accessories are anticipated. The VA order builds upon ADG’s proven record of dependability as the PAPR system provider of choice for federal agencies.  

ADG’s PPE products have been used by various branches of the U.S. government for over 20 years. In addition to the above HHS and VA contracts, ADG has received over $15 million in non-governmental orders for PPE during the current pandemic. ADG’s emergency response equipment and PPE are utilized by the U.S. Department of State, Office of Strategic Medical Preparedness, FEMA and CDC infectious disease treatment centers.

The Company provides protective equipment to emergency first response teams and hospitals in hundreds of U.S. cities, as well as over 30 countries worldwide. ADG successfully responded during the MERS and Ebola outbreaks, by providing critical protective equipment to government and civilian first response customers.  ADG will continue to engage in the response to the COVID-19 outbreak through the rapid delivery of domestically manufactured PPE and patient isolation systems to the first-responder community.

For more information, please visit www.adg.com.  

KiloNiner Pets – FR1 Respirator Mask for Humans

Saturday, July 18th, 2020

KiloNiner Pets has introduced a product for humans, the FR1 Respirator Mask.

It features adjustable ear loops and comes with 4x interchangeable Activated Carbon Filters, a breathing valve and the same color scheme to match your pets Cooling Shemagh.

Get yours at kiloninerpets.com/products/fr1-respirator-mask.

And oh yeah, Andrew says “Hi” to everyone.

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