INDUSTRY INNOVATIONS

AND CONTRIBUTIONS

Featured: Aritzia CA

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CAF Member and Canadian retailer Aritzia has reached its goal of $20,000,000 raised for the Aritzia Community™ Relief Fund. The fund was established earlier this year in response to the emerging COVID-19 crisis, to protect their employees across the supply chain from being laid off or furloughed. Additionally, Aritzia donated $10 million in Community Relief Packages to frontline healthcare workers.

Thank you to the hundreds of apparel and textile firms that have stepped up to supply essential medical supplies and PPE during this global emergency: 

  • Toronto-based company Wuxly Movement has a Government of Canada contract to provide more than a million reusable gowns with an expected completion date of mid-October. The entire production process—from design and pattern making, to end-of-line production and distribution, is completely Canadian.
     

  • Since late March, Stormtech Canada has been working with some of BC's top health authorities to provide millions of essential PPE including surgical masks and gowns. They have also developed a new technical function outdoor fashion face cover, as well as a collection of general purpose masks. 
     

  • Kosan Travel has launched a new line of antibacterial, waterproof general purpose reusable face masks produced in their Vancouver facility. For every mask purchased, Kosan will be donating medical grade surgical masks to someone in need in Nepal, where there is a significant PPE shortage. These masks will be distributed in order of priority to health care workers, orphans and others in need.
     

  • Ben Sherman has launched a new collection of reusable, machine washable cotton face masks. For each pack of face masks purchased, Ben Sherman will donate a pack to healthcare workers and volunteer organizations doing the important essential work needed.
     

  • Harbour Technologies, a Windsor company involved in producing the first all-Canadian, cup-style N95 mask is also going to open a local protective personal equipment manufacturing facility at a vacant plant in the range of 20,000 square feet to house production lines that will produce N95 masks, isolation surgical gowns and other PPE equipment.
     

  • Garment manufacturer ATTRACTION, located in Lac-Drolet, QC, is proud to announce that people can now purchase ethical masks, t-shirts, and sweatshirts, its 100% Canadian brand, directly from Ma Zone Québec. 
     

  • Samuelsohn Limitee announced in a May 21 release that it is creating more jobs and is hiring 100 sewers as it continues to produce PPE while beginning to produce its high-end men’s clothing again.
     

  • KenDor Textiles has been an active participant in providing fabrics for several regional, federal and international Health Authority projects, including working with BC Apparel and Gear Association (BCAGA) members Arc’teryx and Mustang Survival, Americas Apparel Producers Network, Gerber Technology and more in securing Level 3 certified fabrics for the production of medical gowns for our healthcare workers.
     

  • Unisync Group has become the first firm to certify their children and adult reusable face masks to STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX. Their three-layer 100% Cotton Woven face masks are offered in multiple sizes. 
     

  • International Sew Right is helping their community "Cover Up Against COVID-19" by bringing together employees, businesses, volunteers & other community members to donate 23,000 masks to local families, nursing homes, hospitals, construction sites & foundries. 
     

  • The Cutting Edge, an industrial sewing machine operator training program in Winnipeg, has pivoted to manufacturing non-medical PPE. They moved their training program online and are providing flexible employment and income to women juggling extra family responsibilities during school/daycare shutdowns. 
     

  • When Vancouver-based apparel company DUER was forced, due to the COVID-19 crisis, to pivot, quickly and hard, President and Co-founder Gary Lenett and his team were ready with a new way of doing business.
     

  • Nova Scotia businesses shifting production to make PPE for health-care workers: Local companies including Stanfield’s, a Truro-based clothing company, are making face shields, masks and scrubs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
     

  • PPE Procurement Contract lands with Winnipeg-based Mondetta Clothing: Mondetta is one of the companies filling orders for the Manitoba government to bring in PPE. Normally known for their flag-bearing sweaters, the company is now tasked with producing reusable medical scrubs, disposable gowns and gloves.
     

  • Air Force DEU distributor Logistik Unicorp will mobilize its chain of domestic supply to produce millions of washable and disposable medical gowns on a contract with the Government of Canada over the next six months.
     

  • Montreal-based textile firm Tricots Liesse has has been awarded a six-week contract by the Quebec government to produce 10,000 hospital gowns per week, allowing them to re-employ around 100 employees.
     

  • Toronto-based intimate apparel brand Knix has raised over $250,000 through a GoFundMe campaign to help provide masks and gloves to at-risk members of their community.
     

  • Medical mask supplier Medicom is significantly expanding manufacturing operations at home with its first mask factory in Canada set to open by July. It will supply Canada with 30 to 50 million surgical and N95 masks a year under a proposed long-term agreement. On April 20 the Quebec Government announced that they would issue a $4 million loan to assist Medicom with establishing production.

 

  • Toronto-based brand Redwood Classics Apparel is working hard with a volunteer crew to produce non-surgical masks to donate to local hospitals. They produced over 1,000 masks in the first week. Redwood Classics is also supplying their community with ready-to-wear mask packs and DIY mask kits.
     

  • Mustang Survival and Arc'teryx together with Kendor and other firms are working with other B.C. companies to provide 90,000 hospital gowns to Vancouver-area hospitals in the coming weeks.
     

  • Duvaltex has begun producing AAMI-certified, medical-grade disposable and reusable textiles.
     

  • Superior Glove, one of the world’s leading technical glove manufacturers, has increased production in Canada to provide protective medical-grade gloves and masks to frontline workers.
     

  • Textiles Monterey Inc. is supplying level 1 and level 2-compliant fabrics for medical-grade hospital gowns to apparel firms who have pivoted to produce PPE.

 

  • Novo Textiles Co. has retooled its factory in Coquitlam from pillows and dog beds to PPE, to assist in the production of surgical and N95 masks. They will be the first in Canada to produce N95 respirators, at a rate of 100,000 per day.

  • The first batch of non-medical face masks and isolation gowns produced by Gildan Activewear Inc. have arrived at the CHU de Quebec–Universite Laval. Over the next few weeks, local hospitals will receive an additional 400,000 gowns produced entirely in-house at Gildan’s Montreal facilities. 
     

  • Sudbury apparel-maker keeping industry faces covered: Mask sales spur Covergalls founder to fundraise for long-term care facilities to purchase protective wear.
     

  • PRI·MED Medical Products based in Edmonton continues to supply critical protective apparel to Canadian contracts, in addition to supporting additional pandemic demands across the country.
     

  • Quartz Co. helps hospitals across the country by reopening the doors of its factories in Montreal and Victoriaville to produce medical garments to answer the urgent call for personal protective equipment (PPE). Since April 20, Quartz Co.’s staff has been back at work manufacturing medical equipment.
     

  • Researchers at the University of British Columbia are working on prototypes for a biodegradable N95 mask, dubbed the Canadian mask or Can-Mask. It has a frame made of B.C. wood fibres such as pine, spruce, cedar and other softwoods. One of the prototypes incorporates a commercial N95 filter; the other has a filter made from wood-based products.
     

  • Myant Inc. is collaborating with Canadian dental expert Dr. Natalie Archer, D.D.S., to develop a new line of PPE designed to address the risks that dental professionals face as they reopen their practices. The types of PPE in development will include both washable textile masks intended for support staff in dental practices as well as washable textile-based respirators that meet NIOSH N95 standards for dental professionals who work in critical proximity to patients.
     

  • Coop Couturiers Pop has brought together more than 300 Montreal-based seamstresses to donate 40,000 masks to the City of Montreal, for to citizens in especially hard-hit neighbourhoods.
     

  • Vancouver-based clothing brand Aritzia will donate $20 million worth of custom-designed clothing to assist front-line health-care workers as they fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
     

  • London, Ont., clothing company making protective gowns, masks to support COVID-19 efforts: Two local businesses have teamed up to get out of fashion design and into making PPE to help address shortages. In just under four weeks, clothing design company Carmina de Young and MLD Solutions Inc. have transitioned to the production of gowns and masks.
     

  • Gerber PPE Task Force helps manufacturers switch to production of PPE: To help support the fight against COVID-19, Gerber has created the Gerber PPE Task Force to support customers as they need to increase their production and/or transition to manufacturing PPE.
     

  • Outdoor Outfits, Toronto-based manufacturer of first responder uniforms, is producing re-usable hospital gowns using level 2-compliant fabrics for first responders, long-term care facilities, and hospitals across Ontario.
     

  • Majestic International has recalled employees to sew cloth masks that are being given away to employees and their families, as well as to donate to local charities and front-line healthcare workers. So far the company has donated over 1,000 masks and KN95 Ventilators.
     

  • 'It's been quite staggering': John Fluevog says interest in Dr. Bonnie Henry shoe overwhelming. Named after B.C.’s provincial health officer, the pink pump goes on sale this week, proceeds to food banks.
     

  • Tricots Maxime has joined other Quebec-based textile firms in the emergency manufacturing of PPE such as masks and gowns. They aim to produce 20,000 masks per day, allowing a third of their employees to retain their jobs through this emergency.
     

  • Vancouver designer Jason Matlo recently announced an initiative to create masks and face shields to donate to Mutual Aid Vancouver, which aims to deliver groceries delivery and medication to locals in need, such as the elderly and immunocompromised.
     

  • Salts & West, an organic clothing brand from Vancouver Island, recently announced they would be shifting their production away from apparel in order to focus on making reusable (non-medical) textile masks.
     

  • Sustainable sourcing platform Benchwork has been working with several large apparel factories to help them pivot and procure supplies for PPE production.
     

  • Canadian outerwear brand Nobis has announced a three-week global initiative where 100 per cent of all online sales will be donated to protect frontline healthcare professionals spearheading the fight against COVID-19.  
     

  • American shoe brand New Balance has retooled its factories to help boost stocks of PPE by producing medical-grade face masks.
     
  • Fashion giant H&M has asked its supply chain to produce PPE to help medical staff tackle the COVID-19 outbreak and use its global networks to deliver them to hospitals as soon as possible.
     

  • Through an innovative new design that does not require any sewing, Under Armour is producing 100,000 surgical masks per week to help offset the global PPE shortage.
     

  • As of the week of March 30, Canada Goose is now producing and distributing scrubs and gowns at their manufacturing facilities in Winnipeg and Toronto.
     

  • Calhoun Sportswear in St. Catharines have retooled their facility from jerseys to reusable cloth masks, as a skeleton crew of 20 employees works to ramp up production to meet their goal of 10,000 masks per day.  

To add your firm to the list, please contact us with information on contributions your firm has made toward the fight against COVID-19.

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