CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) -In March, Buckeye Mask did not even exist, but by May, the small startup company, born out of COVID 19 necessity, was churning out a couple of thousand masks a day.
Carla Macklin is the owner of Buckeye Mask and says she has been at breakneck speed just to get the company’s machines made and the product launched.
Now, just a few months later, Buckeye Mask, in a deal brokered by the Ohio Manufacturing Alliance, has partnered with Stitches USA, a company out of Walnut Creek, Ohio, and they have secured grants and millions in loans from Jobs Ohio to dramatically increase production.
These are masks that will now be made in Ohio rather than overseas due to the hard work of everyone involved.
“We’re hopeful we are making a product that is going to resonate not only with Ohioans but throughout the country,” Macklin said.
The Ohio Manufacturing Advocacy and Growth Network is now helping with engineering and technical support.
“We engaged a machine manufacturer out of Germany who quickly was able to put together prototypes of automated equipment to make the masks,” Macklin said.
The masks, Macklin says, have 2 level barriers for optimum airflow and protection and can be washed.
A company that wasn’t even in existence five months ago will soon be making close to a million masks a month.
“We don’t have all of our machines yet, but we’re starting to fulfill orders and should be able to ramp up capacity in the next couple of weeks,” Macklin said.
Buckeye Masks hopes to soon be making 54,000 masks a day.