At Kimberly-Clark’s experimental and prototype facility in West Neenah, Wisconsin, a thorough production process for paper products is underway, with a particular focus on highly specialized diapers. Andy Grignon, facility manager, emphasizes that these products have a purpose beyond just being diapers. According to Grignon, “It’s one of the types of products you’ll never see on conventional store shelves, as they are sold exclusively to our hospitals.”
The micropremature diaper, designed for babies up to four pounds, and the even smaller nano-diapers intended for babies up to two pounds, are the result of a meticulous production process. Grignon notes that compared to standard-size diapers, which typically weigh six to eight pounds, these diapers are noticeably smaller and more specialized.
After assembly, the diapers undergo a thorough inspection by workers. Kimberly-Clark team leader Emily Schmitz emphasizes that this diaper design was developed in close collaboration with nurses and neonatal intensive care unit staff. According to Schmitz, the goal was clear: “We wanted to make sure that the diaper was not an additional concern for nurses and parents in the NICU.”
Schmitz adds that the packing and packaging process is also carried out manually, ensuring rigorous quality control. Despite this detailed scrutiny, the authorities report that only a tiny percentage of diapers do not meet the established quality standards.
The professionals working on this product take immense pride in their contribution. According to Schmitz, “they are really helping to support the growth and development of these low birth weight babies.” Grignon emphasizes the importance of meeting the needs of such a delicate consumer and underscores the company’s unwavering commitment to quality and purpose in its daily production. In closing, it’s worth noting that in October, Kimberly-Clark Corporation will mark its 10th anniversary of producing diapers for premature babies, totaling approximately 30 million diapers manufactured to date.