DETROIT - BASF Corp.'s Polymers Division and Philip Environmental have formed a joint venture to recycle polyurethane products. Philip will operate a 10 million-pound-per-year facility in Detroit. The 4,000-square-foot plant will be built on Philip's property and will be in operation early next year. It will employ six to 10.
Initially, post-production scrap such as bumpers with molding defects will be recycled. Within a year, the companies expect to be recycling post-consumer scrap such as painted bumpers and in-line skate wheels.
The plant will use proprietary technology developed by BASF in Germany in 1992. It is based on a chemical recycling process known as glycolysis, and breaks down thermoset PU into polyols. BASF will sell the recycled polyol to automotive parts manufacturers to help them meet recycled-content goals. It will be competitively priced with virgin polyol.
BASF Corp. in Mount Olive, N.J., is the North American representative of BASF AG, headquartered in Ludwigshafen, Germany. Philip Environmental of Hamilton, Ontario, specializes in resource recovery and industrial services.
LEOLA, PA. - Dart Container Corp. plans to build a 208,000-square-foot warehouse next to its plastics manufacturing site in Leola.
The warehouse still is ``in the planning stages,'' while Dart waits on the necessary permits from city, county and state, said John Darras, vice president of manufacturing. If approved, the building will go up sometime next year, he said by telephone Oct. 24. Dart currently leases warehouse space off-site, and does not expect the new facility to generate jobs.
At the 2 million-square-foot plant in Leola, Dart injection molds plastic food containers and cutlery, and thermoforms polystyrene cups and plates. PS sheet stock is extruded in- house. The plant employs roughly 850, Darras said. He would not disclose sales for the Mason, Mich.-based firm.
EASTHAMPTON, MASS. - When Ekco Group Inc. stops manufacturing cleaning brushes in Easthampton, about 30 injection molding workers will lose their jobs.
That plant, along with another in Hamilton, Ohio, is part of Ekco's cleaning products unit, which will be consolidated in Obreg¢n, Mexico, during the next year and a half.
At Easthampton, 11 presses, with clamping forces of 100-500 tons, injection mold plastic components for cleaning brushes. Formerly Kellogg Brush Manufacturing Co., the operation was acquired by Ekco in 1993. Nearly all of that outfit's plastics molding is done in-house, said John Haran, Ekco vice president and treasurer.
Earlier this month Haran said he thought most of Easthampton's plastic parts were molded at Ekco's Worcester, Mass., plastics division. But he said Oct. 23 that the Worcester division, which makes mainly all-plastic end-user items, such as laundry baskets and crates, supplies as little as 10 percent of Easthampton's plastic parts. Among the plastic items Easthampton does not make in-house is a blow molded cleaning bottle. The Ohio plant gets plastic components from Worcester.
Robert Stein, Ekco Group vice president and chief executive, said: ``We regret the loss of jobs at the existing plants; however, we recognized the cost to manufacture products at these locations has not been competitive.''
About 290 manufacturing, assembly and other workers gradually will be cut as Ekco moves production from Massachusetts and Ohio to Mexico. Ekco is based in Nashua, N.H.
INTERCESSION CITY, FLA. -Arson is being investigated as the possible cause of a Sept. 26 fire at Mason Plastics of Intercession City.
Bob Jones, Osceola County fire marshal, said Oct. 23 that state officials ``have just started an investigation.'' He said the blaze caused nearly $500,000 in damage.
Matt Meyers, the county's public safety administrative chief, said no injuries were reported. The fire destroyed the facility, where bottles and other products were molded, he said.
The company's owner, identified as William R. Mason of Kissimmee, Fla., could not be reached for comment.