How the Corona Virus has affected Honduras
As we all know by now, 2020 has been heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. While this is affecting every country differently, we will be diving into how it has affected Honduras and the textile industry.
Did you know that Honduras’s textile mills supplied 75% of knit tee shirts and fleece to the USA? These knit tee shirts and fleece can be found in giftshops at Disney, NASA, Hard Rock Café, and other tourist attractions. With the ever changing COVID affected economy and tourism industry, Honduras’s textile mills changed their manufacturing processes to go from tee shirts to the critically needed PPE masks, gowns, and scrubs to help protect our first responders and essential workers.
In March of 2020, the President of Honduras made the executive decision to lock down the country- making sure there were no flights in or out and all boarders were closed. A curfew was put in place and all restaurants, retailers, markets and gas stations were closed. The only exceptions were pharmacies were open and first responders could be on the road. After 6 weeks of the shutdown, the mills were able to open at 50 % capacity to produce the vital PPE products. With health and safety being a top priority, the mills implemented new safety procedures including separate sewing areas, mandatory mask wearing, social distancing.
As the government gradually reopened, they kept restrictions in place such as: no international flights into the country and mandatory curfew. Supermarkets, banks, and gas stations re-opened but have limited hours of 9 am to 5 pm from Monday through Friday. Honduras citizens are only allowed to go shopping on their assigned day (one day per week) using their Honduras ID number or foreigner passport. US citizens still in Honduras need to work with the Embassy to fly out of the country as all hotels, restaurants and malls are still closed.
As of October 2020, textile mills are open at 25% capacity for normal business and 50 % capacity for PPE contracts. While the current conditions have less COVID positives and better procedures in place, Honduras has a long road to fully re-open and witness the bounce back of the textile mills. If you have any questions on how First Source is handling Honduras orders and shipments, please click the picture below.
Borneman, Jim. “Jim Borneman.” Textile World, 26 Sept. 2017, www.textileworld.com/textile-world/2017/09/honduras-transforms-its-textile-sector-with-us1-5b-in-investments-in-cutting-edge-technologies/.