Several coworkers wearing masks due to COVID-19

Contributed By Acme Paper and Supply Company

Acme Paper and Supply Company, a supplier of disposable food service packaging, hygiene and facilities solutions, restaurant equipment and supply, retail and industrial packaging, and custom-designed packaging, announced Monday that it is marking 75 years in business.

Founded in 1946 by Edward and Mildred Attman, Acme Paper began in a tiny 1500-square-foot rented garage in Baltimore with six products. Since then, the business has grown dramatically with thousands of products across six divisions from its headquarters and warehouse in Jessup, Maryland and a warehouse operation in Richmond, Virginia — totaling 10 million cubic feet of space with nearly 250 employees.

Edward and Mildred Attman named their new business “Acme Paper” because they wanted their paper business to be listed at the front of the phone book. With the onset of the internet and the disappearance of the phone book, the family has kept this name and added the slogan, “much more than paper," since today they provide products and services that far surpass just paper.

“My father’s best advice as a business owner was to always treat everyone – from the person who collects the trash to the CEO – like an extension of your family, with respect and dignity,” said Ron Attman, Acme co-CEO. “Great ideas are not limited to those with the most experience. Open communication at every level allows great ideas to be heard and helps the company grow and be successful.”

Acme’s “much more than paper” slogan took on a new meaning when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. As a local business that cares deeply about the communities they serve, the ACME team knew they needed to be on the forefront of the pandemic. Acme made sure to stock up on personal protective equipment (PPE) supplied for those on the frontline of the pandemic. When high demand items like hand sanitizer and masks were in short supply, Acme was able to access ample quantities for those who needed them most. Acme also made numerous large-scale PPE and meal donations to frontline workers. Throughout the pandemic, Acme’s team worked around the clock delivering lifesaving critical materials to hospitals, nursing homes and other senior living communities, schools, and more. When other supply chains were broken, Acme’s existing supplier relationships came through and made their orders a priority.

Additionally, Acme provided much needed supplies to restaurants, including acrylic distancing barriers, sanitizing wipes and other disinfecting supplies, disposable drinkware and cutlery for expanded delivery options, and more. To ensure kitchen safety, Acme also made high-temperature dishwashers available for kitchens to ensure maximum sanitation. 

“It’s been a long year. Our team has been working tirelessly, sometimes 24/7, to make sure our products arrive quickly during these unprecedented times,” said Andy Attman, Acme Vice President and third-generation leadership. “My grandfather would be so proud of how the business he started so many years ago pivoted to protect front line workers and others from illness or worse. It’s definitely been a year of high pressure, but at the same time so rewarding that we were able to be there to help when it was needed most.”

Acme, even during the pandemic, never lost sight of remaining current with sustainable technologies to make their company as environmentally sound as possible. Last year, when Maryland became the first state to ban Styrofoam, Acme was prepared with myriad environmentally-friendly packaging options. Acme worked to make this transition as seamless and economically feasible as possible for the already suffering restaurant industry. 

“We’ve seen many changes over the years in our industry. Paper bags to plastic bags and back to paper. Paper straws to plastic straws and back to paper, mops to robotic floor scrubbers, bleach disinfectants to peroxide disinfectants, cloth wipes to battery operated spray disinfecting equipment, and so much more over the last three quarters of a century,” said David Attman.

So, whether it is a restaurant looking to keep guests safe or a hospital or school trying to eliminate the spread of COVID-19, Acme’s leaders’ abilities to think ahead and lead with innovative ideas has been the source of much of their success; continuing to establish them as a strong family owned and operated business and a leader in the industries they support.

Over their 75-year history, Acme Paper and Supply can also be recognized for their philanthropy. The entire Acme team lends their time, talent, and dollars to charitable organizations doing good across the region. 

To commemorate this special anniversary year, Acme has committed to supporting 75 charities. They will support charities across the region that do good in their communities. This support will span healthcare, industry associations, schools, youth recreational programs, social service organizations, among many others. 

“Our philosophy from the very beginning has always been to give back. We’ve worked hard for our success and believe that it is our responsibility to contribute to causes that make our communities better and stronger,” said Steve Attman, Acme Paper co-CEO. “We learned from our parents and our children have learned from us. As we transition the business to our children, the third generation running Acme Paper, they too will teach their children and Acme will continue to grow and change to meet the vital needs of both our customers and the community at large.”