March 15, 2021
HomTex, an Alabama-based, minority-certified textile manufacturer manufactures 3-ply disposable masks and reusable cloth masks, which it supplies to the US Capitol, and soon will produce NIOSH N-95 masks in a new plant in Selma, Alabama.
HomTex is now positioned to have the largest capacity in the US to produce 100 percent made-in-America masks with facilities in Cullman and Mobile, Alabama; Tennessee; South Carolina; and North Carolina.
Jerry Wooten, CEO of HomTex, said “When I say made in America, I mean every component sourced in the US and made in the US. We believe that ramping up domestic manufacturing of PPE products is a national imperative from a safety, economic, and national security perspective, and HomTex is proud to meet that challenge.”
While hospitals and governments have been struggling to provide safe PPE for Americans, defective and fraudulent masks, often made in China, have flooded the US market. According to the Associated Press, federal law enforcement has seized 10 million counterfeit N95 masks alone, and the US Customs and Border Patrol announced in June 2020 that it seized 750,000 counterfeit face masks in 86 incidents. Due to emergency procurement rules put in place during the pandemic, China and other bad actors have access to the US market that otherwise would be banned. By selling defective and counterfeit masks at rock-bottom prices, fraudsters are exploiting US buyers with unsafe PPE and undermining US-made manufacturing.
According to Wooten, “It’s time for purchasers of critical PPE – particularly federal, state, and local governments – to wake up to the fact that Chinese and foreign-made masks are cheaper, but likely defective, counterfeit, and plain-old dangerous. It’s important to buy safe, genuine, and approved PPE from a trusted made-in-America manufacturer. We are proud to be a strategic provider to the Architect of the US Capitol which supplies masks to the US House of Representatives, the US Capitol, and the US Senate.”
“We are immensely proud of all HomTex is doing to produce PPE,” said Katie Boyd Britt, President of the Business Council of Alabama. “Receiving this critical authorization from the FDA allows them to expand their PPE offerings and to keep Americans safe. We are thrilled to be a trusted partner as they expand their operations in Selma.”
HomTex has the capacity to produce 700 million surgical 3-ply masks and 20 million NIOSH N-95 masks annually. HomTex will open an additional manufacturing facility in Selma, AL in the Fall of 2021 that will create 300 jobs for the most economically disadvantaged region of Alabama.