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coronavirus, COVID-1, manufacturing

As we enter the month of April and navigate another week of “the new normal” in light of the coronavirus outbreak manufacturers are forced to further consider their operations and make more decisions about what the implications will be for the long term.

According to the latest survey results from Gardner Intelligence, the research arm of Product Finishing’s parent company Gardner Business Media, the week of March 23 saw significantly more manufacturers make adjustments to production/capacity as automotive OEMs closed facilities and states closed non-essential businesses. You can read the survey results here.

Many of the manufacturers we talk to are considered essential businesses and are continuing to operate and many of them have pivoted their focus to address shortages in much-needed equipment and supplies including ventilators, surgical masks and sanitizers. One example recently covered by Products Finishing is Calvary Industries who has responded by obtaining new permits and retooling their manufacturing operation in order to mass-produce general-purpose sanitizers (Learn more).

The response by the whole of manufacturing has been inspiring and is discussed in detail in an op-ed by Gardner Business Media president Rick Kline Jr. which was published in the Wall Street Journal on March 31. You can read it here.

Associations in the coating and finishing industries have been working to compile resources for shops. The Chemical Coaters Association International (CCAI) has launched a page on the CCAI website of COVID-19 resources for members. The page includes U.S. Department of Labor Information & Links, Center for Disease Control & Prevention Links, OSHA Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19 LinkEqual Employment Opportunity Commission Link, Small Business Administration Guidance & Loan Resources, Shelter-In-Place States Links to Essential Business Information and other resources. You can access the page here.

The NASF (National Association for Surface Finishing) has sent out a similar toolkit to members including links to U.S. Chamber of Commerce resources, the National Governor’s Association COVID-19 resources and U.S. Small Business Administration's Disaster Loan Program.

As the world works its way through this crisis, it is inspiring to see communities come together. Manufacturers are working hard to meet supply needs and the opportunities will likely increase as the world gets past the coronavirus outbreak and begins to rebound. However, the supply chain will likely change and the current ways of doing business will be tested and reassessed.

Products Finishing, along with other Gardner Business Media brands, is working to keep you informed as we all work through this together – our collective coverage can be found at

Stay well.