T-shirt maker Gildan Activewear Inc. , which uses Haitian workers to sew some of its fabrics, said Wednesday it is shifting production from earthquake-ravaged Haiti to other plants after one of its facilities suffered "substantial" damage.
The Montreal-based company has no direct manufacturing facilities in Haiti, but uses third-party contractors to sew most of the fabric produced at its Dominican Republic textile facility.
Initial indications suggest that two out of the three contractor facilities used by Gildan are intact, while the third and smallest contractor facility has suffered "substantial" damage, the company said in a release.
Gildan said it's still gathering information "in order to fully evaluate the impact of the Haiti earthquake on the operations and employees of its sub-contractors in the country."
The company's textile and sewing facilities in the Dominican Republic have not been affected by yesterday's magnitude-7.0 earthquake.
Gildan's manufacturing hub in the Dominican Republic and Haiti supplies a part of the company's basic T-shirt requirements for the U.S. screen-print market.
The company is "in a strong inventory position and is immediately implementing contingency plans to minimize likely short-term disruption of contractor production in Haiti by increasing production at its integrated sewing facilities in the Dominican Republic, Honduras and Nicaragua," it said.
The supply of products for the company's retail customers is not affected by the situation in Haiti.
Gildan's management said they "concerned" for the well-being of the people in Haiti and are "committed to playing a leadership role in efforts to provide humanitarian aid to the country."