Johns Manville Producing Nonwoven Media for Face Masks

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Berkshire Hathaway’s Johns Manville, a leading manufacturer and marketer of premium-quality building and specialty products, started production this month to make nonwoven filtration media that will be used to create needed face masks to help stop the spread of COVID-19. The filtration media is being produced at its plant in Richland, Mississippi.

“Johns Manville is in a unique position to serve a market that is fulfilling a great need across the world,” said Mary Rhinehart, President and CEO of Johns Manville. “We are proud of our teams in Richland and throughout JM for finding new ways to support the communities and people who are on the front lines of this global crisis.”

Most nonwoven production of face masks was abandoned in the U.S. many years ago and moved to Asia. Given the shortage of face masks in the U.S. and Europe, JM’s Engineered Products business decided to build on its existing capabilities and help fill the market demand.

“Our high-performance nonwoven material is designed to provide high levels of filtration for various types of face masks,” said John Vasuta, President of JM’s Engineered Products business.

JM media meets or exceeds Level 1 BFE 95% (Bacterial Filtration Efficiency) and VFE (Viral Filtration Efficiency) requirements. These results were verified by an FDA-registered national laboratory.

The JM plant in Richland employs about 50 people and produces a variety of filtration products for various air and liquid applications using polypropylene and polyester meltblown technology. Richland’s meltblown filtration media can be found in numerous industrial, automotive, consumer products and FDA-approved food and healthcare applications.

© 2020 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

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