'Efficiency' is watchword for VDMA's promotion

By: David Vink

October 15, 2013

DÜSSELDORF, GERMANY — A "blue horses" ["blaue Pferde"] promotion kicked off Oct. 14 in support of the Blue Competence campaign of the VDMA Plastics and Rubber Machinery Association.

The project is aimed at the German machinery sector's efforts to promote efficiency in raw materials, energy and recycling

Blue plastic toy horse parts — the body, head, saddle and reins that can be assembled — are being molded in a tent in downtown Düsseldorf, The public demonstration will run through Oct. 22 in Heinrich-Heine-Platz square, between the Kaufhof Galeria and Carsch-Haus department stores.

At K 2013, horse parts are also being molded at the Sumitomo (SHI) Demag Plastics Machinery GmbH booth (Hall 15/D22).

In downtown Düsseldorf, an Arburg Allrounder 270A 350-70, an Engel e-mac 50 and a KraussMaffei AX100-380 are molding the toy horse parts.

The blue horse toy is one of the earliest Playmobil-brand toys produced by Georg Brandstätter GmbH & Co KG, and has been in production since 1974.

Brandstätter itself said that it now has 80 percent less energy consumption than the company did in 1974; about 12 percent of all production waste goes into molding the blue horses, 85 percent into production of other plastic products and just 3 percent ends up being used as a fuel in waste incineration plants — instead of oil.

Brandstätter also said that production performance of its injection molding machines has increased by 200 percent since 1972.

Although it's not standard in production, the blue horses being molded in downtown Düsseldorf and at the fair are being packed in biodegradable plastic packaging from Wentus Kunststoff GmbH of Höxter, Germany.

VDMA Managing Director Thörsten Kühmann says the group's efficiency campaign was focused on capturing the attention of the general public. VDMA officials thought a toy would do that better than a highly complex technical part, such as the parts on the BMW i3 electric car, which will hit the roads in Germany next month.

More details regarding the molding processes involved in the project are available at the downtown exhibit and at the stands of press makers Arburg GmbH & Co. KG(Hall 13/A13)), Engel Austria GmbH (Hall 15/B42, C58), and KraussMaffei Technologies GmbH (Hall 15/C24, C27).