State Policy Network
In Mississippi, private sector innovates during pandemic

From individuals to the private sector, America continues to see challenges bring out the best in people. After Hurricane Katrina, volunteers and supplies from all over the country descended on the Mississippi Gulf Coast to help Mississippi rebuild. The coronavirus pandemic is no different.

The Mississippi Center for Public Policy has profiled some of the business that are adapting to the crisis and innovating to serve a need.

Blue Delta Jeans, a high-end clothing company based out of Oxford, Mississippi, quickly shifted their focus from making custom-fit jeans to masks as widespread need became apparent. After working with suppliers and conducting tests, the entire factory shifted from jeans to masks in just a 48-hour period. They were soon making 10,000 masks per week.

Rich Grain Distilling Company, which usually makes bourbon at their Canton, Mississippi distillery, is now serving communities throughout the state by making hand sanitizer, another product that was in short supply as the pandemic hit. Like many other distilleries nationwide, they were able to do this after the federal government lifted multiple regulations.

Along with serving a critical need in the state, these businesses are also able to maintain their full staff at a time when unemployment is skyrocketing nationwide. These are just two companies. There are countless others. But through them, we see the American spirit and the private sector rising to whatever is thrown its way.

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