John Deere has fired up a new enterprise that will protect health care workers.
In collaboration with the United Auto Workers (UAW), the Iowa Department of Homeland Security and the Illinois Manufacturers' Association, the heavy farm equipment manufacturer announced today it is producing protective face shields for health care workers. The work began April 8.
The face shields are being produced at the John Deere Seeding Group in Moline, Illinois. That facility manufactures planting equipment and precision ag solutions.
Deere employees will initially produce 25,000 face shields to meet the immediate needs of health care workers in several of its U.S. manufacturing communities. Materials and supplies are on order to produce an additional 200,000 face shields. The company is using an open-source design from the University of Wisconsin-Madison for the project.
"Our manufacturing and supply management teams, along with our production and maintenance employees, the UAW and our partners have worked tirelessly to ensure we could lend our support and protect our health care workers during this crisis," said John May, Chief Executive Officer, Deere & Company. "By working closely with the communities where our employees live and work, we can help support the needs we've identified close to home and, as the project expands, address additional, urgent needs across the country."
"This is a very proud day for the UAW and our UAW members," said Rory L. Gamble, UAW President. "We are especially proud of the courageous UAW members who are stepping up to do this critical work."
Deere has produced 18,000 protective face shields for use by factory employees. Employees also are sewing cloth masks for members of Deere communities.
Deere has launched a COVID-10 innovations website to share open-source specifications for related projects, including 3D-printed clips to affix face shields to protective bump caps. (See https://www.deere.com/…)
© Copyright 2020 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.