​Keen Inc announced plans to increase its Portland, OR production by 26 percent driven by demand for its “American Built” Utility boots and hikers assembled in Portland. Also, Keen is expanding its manufacturing relationship with Nester Hosiery, the manufacturer of outdoor socks based in North Carolina.

Specifically, Nester Hosiery will develop, manufacture and distribute new designs for men’s, women’s, and youth socks for Keen Casual and Keen Utility brands.

“Built in America has never been more important,” said Erik Burbank, vice president, Keen Effect. “We’re excited to increase the number of boots we build in our Portland factory. We continued to invest in technology to ensure the facility is state-of-the-art and our talented team puts heart and soul into every pair of boots and sandals they assemble.  We’re equally excited to expand our relationship with Nester, one of our most trusted partners. Through this partnership, we’ll help ensure Keen socks will continue to be made in America.”

Based in Mt. Airy, NC, Nester Hosiery has been manufacturing socks for outdoor brands since 1993 with an emphasis on merino wool. In 2018 it became the first sock manufacturer in the United States to join the bluesign system.

“Keen is one of our longest-standing partners, and we share the same core values,” said Kelly Nester, CEO, Nester Hosiery. “This new direction in our relationship enables us to give customers a broader range of functional and versatile socks while growing the Keen brands.”

Photo courtesy Keen