Statement from Carey Jaros, President and CEO, GOJO
AKRON, Ohio – On March 11th, The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a pandemic. Additionally, President Donald Trump declared the pandemic a national emergency. Over the last few days, GOJO Industries has experienced a dramatic increase in orders of PURELL® products, above and beyond what we had experienced since late January.
After becoming aware of the developing situation in China last December, we immediately activated our demand surge preparedness team and began significantly increasing production at our two Ohio manufacturing facilities and a manufacturing facility in France.
As part of our demand preparedness planning, we typically hold excess inventory and maintain the ability to increase production several times greater than typical demand. Our manufacturing facilities are operating around the clock to produce many millions of bottles and refills -- which amounts to many billions of uses -- of PURELL® products each day. We are continuing to work to increase our capacity even further to meet this dramatic expansion in demand.
As a company dedicated to protecting public health, our operating principle is to prioritize healthcare facilities and first responders that are on the front line, while also keeping a steady and predictable flow of PURELL® products to our distributors and retailers, so they can supply schools, restaurants, airports, and consumers.
I know many people are asking, ‘when will I see PURELL® Hand Sanitizer on retail shelves again?’ We can tell you we are shipping PURELL® products to retailers every single day. Consumers are buying out these products as soon as they hit shelves, which is amplifying the sense of shortage. Fortunately, many retailers are now beginning to limit how much product any one consumer can buy, and we strongly support this approach. We don’t sell product directly to consumers or set retail prices, but like many of you, we have seen and been upset by the price gouging around our products. This goes directly against our GOJO Value of Caring for Ourselves and Others, and we feel strongly that there is no place for it. We support all efforts to stop this practice.
GOJO is a third generation Family Enterprise in Ohio, with 2,500 team members who are doing everything they can to support public health during this time – all while also trying to care for their own families and communities. More than ever, we are all committed to our GOJO Purpose of Saving Lives and Making Life Better Through Well-Being Solutions and are proud to be playing a vital role at this challenging and dynamic time.
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