Pictured: Rolls of Charmin toilet paper at the Procter & Gamble plant in Oxnard.
by Kateri Wozny
For Ventura County residents still on the hunt for toilet paper, the Procter and Gamble (P&G) plant in Oxnard, producer of Charmin toilet paper, has a reassuring message.
“Charmin is on the way,” said Shayla Jenkins, human resources manager for the P&G Oxnard site. “Consumers are choosing to stock up more and stay at home.”
The plant was built in 1969. According to the P&G website, the company acquired the plant from the International Paper Company in 1973 and is one of six P&G plants across the U.S. that produce paper products. The Oxnard location is open 24/7, 365 days a year and produces Charmin Ultra Soft, Ultra Strong and Mega Rolls as well as Bounty brand paper towels.
“Mega is our favorite, it lasts longer,” Jenkins noted.
“We know it’s still a challenge to find Charmin in stores or online,” said Tonia Elrod, P&G spokesperson. “While it’s hard to give you exact timing for when Charmin will be available near you, we want to reassure you that production is rolling right along.”
Charmin toilet paper is made out of a pulp and water mix, then heated, dried and rolled. Jenkins said the plant has a making area, where giant rolls of toilet paper are produced, and a converting area, where the giant rolls are converted into smaller rolls for consumer use. Packaging is then cut into unit loads and later delivered to major retailer shelves.
When asked how many Charmin rolls are made a year with or without the COVID-19 pandemic, Elrod could not comment because it’s considered “competitively sensitive” but mentioned that a four-story-tall paper machine produces the bulks.
“We are . . . shipping and producing at record-high levels,” Elrod said.
Even after a fire at the plant on March 30, Jenkins said no employees, machinery, equipment or product were harmed, and that the facility’s ability to produce and ship was unaffected. In fact, P&G is currently hiring Oxnard plant technicians to manufacture the products and operate the machinery and equipment.
“Next month we will have a class of six and bring in another class of 12 shortly thereafter,” Jenkins said.
While it’s supplying bathrooms across America, P&G is also giving back to the Ventura County community: The company recently donated products to the United Way of Ventura County (UWVC) and Direct Relief headquartered in Santa Barbara. The plant has also given cash donations of more than $155,000 to UWVC, $8,100 to the St. John’s Healthcare Foundation in Oxnard and $2 million to Direct Relief to support frontline workers.
“P&G has a long history of supporting communities in times of need and we are answering the call to do even more,” Elrod said. “Importantly, this is a time that Charmin has the opportunity to give back to the communities where we work and live.”
Elrod added that we should all try to think of others during this time.
“Please stay safe and remember to spare a square for your neighbor,” Elrod said.