In an effort to meet regional and national demand for respirator masks, Wisconsin-based companies Monterey Mills and Eder Flag are teaming up to begin production of vitally needed barrier masks for use by front-line medical personnel and others seeking protective face coverings.
Monterey Mills based in Janesville, WI is the largest textile mill of its kind in North America, and supplier of knitted pile fabric used in a variety of medical and air-filtration products. Eder Flag, based in Oak Creek, WI is the nation’s largest manufacturer of flags and flagpoles and is converting part of its flag-sewing operations to produce the barrier masks.
A large regional health system in Wisconsin has entered into a supplier agreement with Monterey Mills to receive the masks. An initial supply of 20,000 barrier masks will be supplied to the health system. The City of Milwaukee Health Department has also requested 2,500 masks, which will be donated. Monterey Mills is also following up with additional health systems in the region that have expressed interest in receiving the masks.
“It’s wonderful to have two companies in the region coming together to fill this need,” said Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett. “Both companies are known for their quality products and I have no doubt these masks will be met with open arms by health care, law enforcement, and anyone working among the general public during these challenging times.”
Dan Sinykin, president of Monterey Mills, said the protective facemasks are designed to be washable and reversible so that either side can be used directly in front of the face. Doctors and other health care professionals have reviewed the masks’ design and materials used in production.
“We’re combining air filtration and insulation fabrics, with a membrane liner to create a highly effective, comfortable respirator mask. The masks are designed to be re-useable, cleaned in an industrial or home washer, and available for multiple uses.” Sinykin said. These masks will be American made with all product and labor created here in the U.S. With calls coming in from all over the country, we’re ready now to start producing masks and to answer the call for help.”
Organizations interested in ordering the masks should call 877-BLANKET (877-252-6538) or visit www.safeusamasks.com for more information. Priority will be given to healthcare professionals, government agencies and professional services.
“Instead of sewing together the stars and stripes to make U.S. flags, we’re ready to help fill an urgent local and national need. We have the infrastructure and will take necessary steps with our workforce and facility to ramp up production of these masks to the best of our ability,” said Jodi Goglio, chief operating officer of Eder Flag. “We’re very familiar with Monterey Mills and it makes perfect sense for these two Wisconsin companies to collaborate on this project.”
“Monterey Mills has the fabric inventory and manufacturing capacity to produce millions of masks,” Sinykin added, “but we are continuing to look for more trim components, like elastic, to boost supplies and for additional cut and sew partners to support Eder’s efforts.”