Aramark begins making PPE gear for health care workers

(Sarahi Flores/Aramark)

(Sarahi Flores/Aramark)

This article originally appeared on the Philadelphia Business Journal.

Aramark will shift its uniforms production lines to make personal protective equipment for health care workers tackling the COVID-19 crisis.

The Philadelphia-based food, uniforms and facilities company said Monday it will produce respirator and medical masks, scrubs and isolation gowns. Shipments of scrubs and isolation gowns started last week. The manufacturing of respirator and medical masks is expected to start by mid-July. Aramark (NYSE: ARMK) expects to make “millions” of masks, scrubs and gowns.

Shipments will come from factories in Mexico and will be delivered to Aramark’s clients throughout the United States. Those facilities typically make lab coats, work shirts, pants and coveralls.

“As the country pulls together to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, we are pleased to be able to assist the brave frontline workers who need it most,” Aramark CEO John Zillmer said in a statement.

The company announced earlier this month that it would cut senior leadership salaries and temporarily furlough employees in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Aramark employs about 270,000 people worldwide.

Aramark’s business has been hammered by the COVID-19 crisis, as many of its clients in the sports, education and entertainment industries remain closed. Shares of the company are down about 50% year to date but have started to rebound in recent weeks along with the stock market.

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