PPE COVID-19 Mask, gloves, protection glasses for healthcare workers. Shortage of personal protective equipment for coronavirus.

In a move to expand production of 3M respiratory and hearing protection products, 3M is announcing plans to grow its plant in Valley, Nebraska. 3M is investing approximately $58 million to fund the 80,000 square foot expansion that will create around 50 new jobs at the facility.

"Our colleagues at 3M's Valley plant have played an important role providing critical supplies to frontline workers throughout the COVID-19 pandemic," says Matt Huset, plant director at 3M Valley. "We're pleased to announce this investment in our growth in Nebraska which will allow us to further meet demand for personal safety equipment for the United States."

As part of the expansion, 3M plans to invest in additional production capacity for re-usable elastomeric respirators and PELTOR hearing protection products in 3M's Personal Safety Division. The additional investments and jobs will help increase capacity and reduce manufacturing cycle time to help meet customer demand. The expansion will include new production lines, equipment and a warehouse.

3M partnered with the state of Nebraska in this expansion through the ImagiNE Nebraska Program, a tax incentive-based program intended to encourage companies to invest in Nebraska by creating jobs and growing the state and its economy.

"We are excited for this investment in our growth at 3M Valley to further help customers in need of personal safety protection in two key product portfolios," says Ray Eby, president, 3M Personal Safety Division. "We want to thank the state of Nebraska and the NDED for their collaboration so far in this expansion."

3M acquired the Valley, Nebraska site in 1979 and it employs about 560 people.

"We are proud to call 3M Valley a neighbor for more than 40 years and are excited to support 3M in its plans to expand its Valley plant and create jobs," says Anthony L. Goins, director, Nebraska Department of Economic Development.  "The ImagiNE Nebraska Act was specifically made to help companies like 3M grow and expand in Nebraska."

3M Valley produces most of its products for the 3M Personal Safety Division. 3M Valley played a significant role in helping 3M meet the unprecedented demand for PPE as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.