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Manufacturers stepping up to deal with the pandemic

While all North American manufacturers, both large and small, are facing uncertainty, many are putting their talents and resources into fighting COVID-19


PHOTO: Adobe Stock

COVID-19 has created both a health and economic crisis of unprecedented proportions.

While all North American manufacturers, both large and small, are facing uncertainty, many are putting their talents and resources to work churning out equipment to help fight the pandemic.

Here are just a few examples:

General Motors

GM and medical firm Ventec Life Systems have joined forces.

The firms are collaborating to enable Ventec to increase production of its respiratory care products. GM says Ventec will leverage its logistics, purchasing and manufacturing expertise to build more ventilators.

“With GM’s help, Ventec will increase ventilator production,” said Chris Kiple, Ventec Life Systems CEO, in a prepared statement. “By tapping their expertise, GM is enabling us to get more ventilators to more hospitals much faster. This partnership will help save lives.”


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Fiat Chrysler

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) will be manufacturing and donating more than 1 million protective face masks per month to help those at the front line of the coronavirus pandemic.

The company will start manufacturing face masks in the coming weeks with initial distribution across the U.S., Canada and Mexico.


FCA to produce face masks for first responders and health care workers


Bosch

The COVID-19-(SARS-CoV-2-) rapid testing kit for the Vivalytic platform developed by Bosch delivers reliable results at the point of care in less than 2.5 hours, according to the firm.

Bosch Healthcare Solutions is working on the development of a COVID-19 rapid testing kit which will launch this April 2020.

The Vivalytic VRI test (viral respiratory tract infections) checks the patient’s sample for the SARS CoV-2 virus, which can lead to COVID-19, as well as nine other possible viral respiratory diseases.


Bosch developing COVID-19 rapid testing kit


Canada Goose

Canada Goose is pitching in to alleviate the shortage of medical supplies needed for the COVID-19 fight with the donation of medical gear to hospitals.

The manufacturer of premium winter garments will begin production of scrubs and patient gowns for frontline health workers at two plants, in Toronto and Winnipeg. Production will be extended to other plants as needed.


Canada Goose making gowns and scrubs for the coronavirus fight


Bauer

PHOTO: BAUER Hockey/Twitter @BauerHockey

Canadian hockey equipment manufacturer Bauer says it has received government authorization to produce protective gear for medical staff and first responders.

The company says it has modified its production line to make full-face, single-use visors.

Hockey gear manufacturer Bauer gets green light to make visors for medical staff

Fanatics

Fanatics said on Twitter: “We’re utilizing our manufacturing plant in Easton, PA to make masks and gowns out of the same jersey fabric that the players wear.” PHOTO: Fanatics/Twitter @Fanatics

The Bryce Harper jersey that could have been worn this baseball season by the biggest Philadelphia Phillies fan is now a protective mask in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

Fanatics, the company that manufactures uniforms for Major League Baseball, has suspended production on jerseys and is instead using the polyester mesh fabric to make masks and gowns for hospitals in Pennsylvania and nearby states.

MLB uniform maker switches to producing medical masks, gowns

Labatt

Labatt Breweries of Canada is in the process of shifting production from beer to hand sanitizer across the country in support of the national effort to combat the spread of COVID-19. PHOTO: Labatt Breweries of Canada

Labatt Breweries of Canada is in the process of shifting production from beer to hand sanitizer across the country in support of the national effort to combat the spread of COVID-19.

Initial production will result in 50,000 bottles of hand sanitizer that will be donated to support Food Banks Canada, front line workers and partners in the restaurant and bar industry.

Labatt shifts production to hand sanitizer to fight spread of COVID-19

Corby Spirit and Wine

Spirits manufacturer Corby Spirit and Wine Ltd. and its Walkerville Hiram Walker & Sons Distillery in Windsor, Ont. announced on March 19 that they will be producing hand sanitizer.

The distillery, producer of J.P.Wiser’s Canadian whisky, typically distills 180,000 litres of alcohol every day, but will be adding hand sanitizer to its production line.

Hiram Walker & Sons Distillery produces hand sanitizer to fight spread of COVID-19

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