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Whats The Difference Between Vinyl And Nitrile Gloves?

Background of Nitrile Gloves

Nitrile Gloves are used in a variety of fields including healthcare, automotive, food & entertainment, and office & home cleaning services. Due to the pandemic and protection for healthcare workers world-wide, manufacturers have been stressed to the maximum output they can produce. Furthermore, currently there is also a limited amount of the raw material that can be produced annually and about 3 countries that own 90% of the production of the world-wide market. These include Thailand, Malaysia, and Vietnam.

As we move into month 7 of the pandemic, we have a new PPE shortage on our hands that may not be as easy to fix as the N95 mask shortage, Medical Nitrile Glove Shortage. The annual production capability of Nitrile Gloves (which doesn’t include all medical) is about 300 billion gloves or 3 billion boxes of (100) annually, which the industry expects a growth of production from 2020-2021 of about 5-10%. Several of the large manufacturers in the market are Hartalega, Supermax, Top Glove, Ansell, and Kimberly-Clark.

Shortage In The US

The shortage in the US is attributed to several issues:

  • The production and manufacturing costs of raw material that is in foreign countries, has for a long-time has made it un-economical to produce Nitrile Gloves in the US.
  • The world’s largest Nitrile Glove maker producing 29% of the worlds output, Top Glove, has been restricted by US customs from importing gloves due to Child Labor issues and Slave Labor like conditions at their manufacturing plants: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-top-glove-usa/amid-virus-crisis-u-s-bars-imports-of-malaysias-top-glove-over-labor
  • The lack of labor due to the pandemic and the spread of virus in the manufacturing facilities of gloves, national lock-downs

Price Change Of Nitrile Glove’s Monthly

One of the hardest things as a PPE supplier in this market space, and an alternative to the usual healthcare providers, is explaining to health systems and hospitals that the price of a box of gloves that they paid $3-$6/ box last year for is now $14-16/box, depending on the thickness and quality. Many of the largest healthcare distributors in the country have changed their prices and can be viewed online selling at $30 Box. A recent report from a Business Journal indicates that prices will go up 20% from September ‘20 to November ‘20. Forwarded looking into 2021 estimates prices will peak in mid-2021 with even a Covid’19 Vaccine released.

Fraud In The Market Place

Healthcare institutions need to be careful surrounding fraud within the market-place. Specifically, that the gloves that were bought by their supply chain and procurement teams have all of the appropriate documentation, 510k, and recent testing reports. We recently worked with a pretty large healthcare facility in San Diego that in July had purchased about 12,000,000 gloves (120,000 boxes) of nitrile-powder free gloves from another vendor and where 40,000 of the boxes had incorrect glove count, sizes, thickness, and colors not advertised on the boxes. We continue to stress to our clients, please purchase from brands and companies that have direct relationship with the US entity of a manufacturer that comes with refund/ defect policies.

Trusted Vendor’s

From our previous blog post ( How Procurement and buying departments can validate PPE Vendors) we have provided 5 steps to take into account in vetting a new PPE vendors. One thing I always suggest to a new customer, please let me send you samples to your office or location and provide you with references. Furthermore, Peach Medical Sourcing is now providing net-terms to buyers. Feel free to call or e-mail us from our current inventory with items including Gloves, N95 Masks, Gowns, Covers, Goggles, and much more.

PeachMedical Corp

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