LAKELAND, Fla. — Masks are still a very much needed tool in protecting healthcare workers from COVID-19.
“Currently we have just north of 450 employees,” said Matt Muller, president of Advanced Concept Innovations.
Advanced Concept Innovations in Lakeland hired an additional 300 workers last April as their production of N95 respirator masks, ramped up during the lockdown.
At the time face masks were a coveted commodity.
“To manufacture here, in this facility in our community, to be available and accessible to everyone. Of course, myself and the team we are proud to be a part of this big thing,” said Linda Feliciano, Production Manager.
ACI has manufactured 90 million N95 masks, making them one of the largest suppliers of the masks in the nation.
During the height of the pandemic, ACI was making close to 800,000 masks a day. Though the CDC says fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask, the need for N95 masks still remains.
“Our mask is technically a NIOSH approved and also FDA cleared surgical mask. So, our mask is actually one of the highest levels of protection you can have so it provides the healthcare worker the protection they deserve,” said Muller.
Muller said ACI is exploring opportunities outside of the United States to expand into the global market.
“We’re able to compete with China not only from a volume standpoint but from a cost basis on a global basis,” Muller said.
The expansion could mean even more jobs coming to Polk County, furthering the growth of the local economy.