Hanesbrands Inc. has completed production and distribution of more than 450 million all-cotton cloth face coverings ordered by the U.S. government for use during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Winston-Salem basic apparel manufacturer also said last week it has made more than 20 million medical gowns for the federal government.
Hanesbrands confirmed March 21 it would begin producing cotton surgical masks at some of its factories in Latin American as part of a federal contract to combat a national shortage of face masks. At peak production, its plants produce about 40 million a week.
President Donald Trump mentioned the Hanesbrands contract with the federal government during a March news briefing about the coronavirus.
Hanesbrands joined a cooperative consortium of other major apparel manufacturers, led by Parkdale Mills America, that dedicated manufacturing capacity to meet the U.S. need for masks.
The surgical gowns are being distributed by the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency to hospitals and temporary treatment facilities. The long-sleeve gowns are made from fabric designed to be splash resistant and can be washed and reused.
“We are proud of the commitment of our employees and our ability to quickly pivot to large-scale production of face coverings and face masks to meet important needs during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Michael Faircloth, Hanesbrands’ group president for global operations, American casualwear and e-commerce.
“In just three months, we were able to go from never having produced face masks to making more than 450 million government face coverings, designing and developing branded programs of high-quality comfortable nonmedical face masks for consumers, and safely and responsibly reopening operations to support our core innerwear and activewear businesses.”
As part of converting some production plants to face masks and medical gowns, Hanesbrands began providing the products to consumers, retailers and business-to-business customers.
The products, sold under the Champion and Hanes brands, feature all-cotton, nylon and polyester blend face masks. They are available online, in retail stores and in Hanesbrands outlet stores.
Faircloth said the face mask and medical gown products enabled Hanesbrands “to keep tens of thousands of employees in the United States and across our global supply chain gainfully employed, productive and safe during a crippling pandemic.”