The additional equipment and expanded capacity are expected to be operational in December 2021.
This investment reflects Berry’s commitment to meet the growing demand for premium spunmelt applications in the hygiene and healthcare markets, the company says. The increased capacity will support products used for personal protection equipment (PPE) such as medical gowns and masks, as well as those used in hygiene applications such as baby diapers, adult incontinence, and feminine care. These spunbond and spunmelt products will include Berry’s proprietary technology developments which provide consumers with improved visual, tactile, and comfort attributes. Adding to the Company’s expansive global footprint, the Statesville expansion further supports localized converting for healthcare products in North America.
“We are excited to announce this investment as our Statesville site plays an important role in our global nonwoven footprint. This expansion supports our ability to provide maximum output for our products,” says Robert Weilminster, gm-Berry’s Hygiene business in the United States and Canada.
Meltblown, nonwoven fabric expansion in South America
In a related move, Berry Global will also make a capital investment in its global meltblown, nonwoven fabric capacity for South America. This line will be Berry’s first meltblown asset, based on its Meltex™ technology, to be located in South America and continues to support the demand for health and wellness products.
The new asset will be operational in March 2021, will be placed at an existing Berry production facility in South America, and will focus on the production of materials for ASTM L2, L3, and N95 masks. The new line will be upgraded with Berry’s patented charging technology post-installation.
With continued demand for face masks globally, Berry has been working closely with customers to help ensure production and supply. The investment will bring more than 400 metric tons of Meltex™ meltblown, nonwoven material to the region, which will enable production of more than 500 million surgical-grade masks per year.