April 09, 2020
COVID-19 Update April 9
While March came in like a lamb and went out like a lamb, April seems to be determined to make up for it. For the second Friday in a row, we awoke to a covering of fresh snow. I believe I am responsible because I put my snowblower into storage last night.
The plant continues to function as normal, although the workload is getting lighter. Having said that, we continue to gear up for what we hope is a more normal business pattern in the second half of the year. So, to update you, the thirty-four-thousand-square-foot expansion of our plant is now complete and awaiting new equipment to be moved in. Our plans for that continue to move ahead. The picture below shows the space.
| Right now, it looks vast, but a new S/C binding line, a Geitz cover decorating machine, and other items will quickly fill it. |
On the current business standpoint, the border remains open and materials are coming in, and books are going out. A few large projects we had in storage have moved out as warehouses reopened or found additional space. We still have room to store books that you want to produce now. We are offering free storage for up to two months, and we will reevaluate that as we go along. We may be able to offer you more time if needed, or less, if you have a need for it sooner.
It bears mentioning that with all the freight and critical supplies moving across the countries, we need to thank the truckers who are so critical to the supply chain right now and always. One Manitoba company found a great way to do just that, creating a pit stop on the Trans-Canada Highway to take the place of many of the closed restaurants.
Smaller organizations continue to find ways to support their frontline staff; in this story below, one staff member even paid it forward.
With the suggestion now of wearing a mask, many of us are looking to start using them—not the critical N95 masks—and people with sewing skills are kicking into gear. In the case below, some are even rescuing the critical N95 masks.
Another Winnipeg company that we are proud to count as one of our customers is also at the forefront of the fight against COVID-19.
The really good news is that social distancing appears to be working, according to the latest reports. It is the easiest way for us all to join the fight, and we need to keep at it.
We in Manitoba continue to be fortunate that the number of active cases has dropped to 149 and the death rate, at three, is very low. While it is too early to say that the curve is flattening, the signs are positive. We feel very fortunate, and our hearts go out to those who are suffering at a much higher level.
That’s it for this week. From our families at Friesens to yours, stay safe and healthy, and enjoy the Easter holiday.
General Sales Manager