MERCURY PLASTICS ADDING CAPACITY

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Film extruder Mercury Plastics Inc. is spending more than $5 million this year to expand converting and recycling capacity.

In October, the City of Industry, Calif., firm expects to start operating an eight-color, high speed, central impression printing press from Windmoeller & Hoelscher Corp. of lincoln, R.I., said Benjamin Deutsch, chief executive officer. He said the new machine will help it expand in vegetable bags and wraps, and film for medical, poultry and other markets.

It already has five central impression presses with four-ans six-color capability and six in-line stack printing presses.

Last month Mercury began running five new FMC bag machines boosting daily production capacity to 4.5 million bags. Four of the machines make wicketed bags, which are bags with slits for air movement, for vegetables and tortillas. The other machine is a split-roll model for nonwicketed bags. Mercury bought six new bag machines last year, and now has 28.

Deutsch said his company also will install a 1,000-pound-per-hour scrap reprocessing line this month.

The Davis-Standard line will replace a less-efficient reprocessor and allow it to expand outside sourcing of scrap to complemetn its in-house scrap recycling program.

In mid-1996, Mercury installes a three-layer cast extrusion line capable of making 110-inch-wide finished film.

The project was part of a $4 million investment to expand and upgrade its 140,000-square-foot operation.

The company also has 14 monolayer blown film lines.