Stormy Kromer: from hats to PPE

Apr 2, 2020

IRONWOOD, MI--   An Ironwood business known for making winter hats is now producing medical masks. 

Credit Stormy Kromer

Stormy Kromer is getting requests for personal protection equipment from around the country since the COVID-19 epidemic hit. Company president Gina Thorsen says management came together to rework the production line.

“We thought we could figure it out and change gears pretty quickly, and just frankly felt like it was really something we really had to do.”   

She says the company worked with medical professionals to develop the mask. It isn’t an N-95, but it is another option.

“The outer layer is a fabric that has a polypropylene coating, so it is waterproof. And so the idea is that if there’s a sneeze or a cough it is at least providing that barrier. And it has cotton on the inside.”   

About two-thirds of Stormy Kromer employees idled by the stay-at-home order have been recalled to make the masks. Thorsen says 2,000 are produced each day and the company is now working on a hospital gown prototype.