Alberta miners, oil patch workers and manufacturers may soon be wearing safety gear made near Calgary.

The federal government is investing $3 million in the Innovative Apparel Program at Olds College as part of the Western Economic Diversification Program. 

"There's actually a pretty big growing demand for high-quality garments such as fire, chemical or weather-resistant apparel, as well as clothing fit for a diverse workforce," said Calgary MP Michelle Rempel, who is in charge of the portfolio.

"Once this centre is ready to use, the equipment will be openly accessible to western Canadian-based companies and entrepreneurs."

Rempel says the program will help local manufacturers meet growing demand for safety gear in the agriculture, energy, mining and manufacturing sectors.

The Innovative Apparel Program expects to test hundreds of new products and garments over the next four years.