Radva to expand Portsmouth, Va., plant
RADFORD, VA. — Radva Corp., a designer and manufacturer of foam products, plans to invest $500,000 to add 30,000 square feet to its Portsmouth, Va., facility.
``With steady growth since 1995 and more growth forecast for 1998, additional space is needed,'' said Radva's Shape Molded Division's President Stephen Dickens in a telephone interview. ``When completed next spring, the investment since 1995 in equipment, building and infrastructure improvements will exceed $1.2 million.''
The Radford, Va.-based firm has been in the process of modernizing by replacing older equipment. Since 1995, Radva has added four new machines. Next year, two more machines will be added to the current 15.
The company uses low clamping pressure presses to mold primarily expanded polystyrene and other copolymer foam. The product line includes an array of flexible, rigid, moldable and fabricated, custom and proprietary items. It makes products for the protective packaging, material handling, point of purchase display and insulated shipping container industries.
Radva employs about 140 at its two plants and tool and die shop. The firm says it serves more than 400 customers, including Canon Virginia Inc., Hewlett-Packard and Gateway2000.
IPEC adding 2nd Brewton, Ala., facility
NEW CASTLE, PA. — Plastic bottle cap maker International Plastics & Equipment Corp. will spend $5 million on a plant in southwestern Alabama, giving the firm a solid foothold in the South.
The injection molder plans to install 15 machines, with clamping forces of 200 to 400 tons each, and have the new facility molding caps by March, said Charles Long, treasurer and part-owner of the New Castle, Pa., firm.
The facility in Brewton, Ala., will be the firm's second, and have the same manufacturing capacity as its New Castle plant.
IPEC focuses on the bottled-water market but also serves the dairy market. Long declined to say which companies the Alabama plant would be doing work for, but he said the bottled water market is rapidly expanding in the South.
IPEC bought an existing 30,000-square-foot building, and plans to add 20,000 square feet of warehouse space to the facility in 1998, Long said.
The firm was attracted to Brewton because it wanted a location with a good quality of life to serve the employees who will be moving from Pennsylvania, he said.
The company also received several tax abatements from local governments.
The firm makes equipment that puts caps on bottles, but the Alabama plant, which will employ 50-60 people, will be strictly for manufacturing the caps.
Foam producers pay EPA $15,000 in fines
WASHINGTON — The Environmental Protection Agency is collecting $15,000 fines from two polyurethane foam producers for using a restricted hydrochlorofluorocarbon foaming agent in ``nonessential'' products.
Universal Urethane Inc. of North Las Vegas, Nev., and Foam Molders & Specialties of Cerritos, Calif., each agreed to pay $15,000 to settle alleged violations of the Clean Air Act, according an EPA news release. Officials at the company were unavailable for comment.
The companies used HCFC-141b, which is considered a Class II ozone-depleting substance, to make products such as pillows for whirlpool spas and cup holders, the EPA alleged.
EPA regulations ban the use of HCFC-141b for all foam products except polyurethane, polystyrene, phenolic rigid, closed-cell insulation products. Pipe insulation products made of rigid, closed-cell polyethylene also can use HCFC-141b.
EPA plans to ban the production of HCFC-141b by Jan. 1, 2003. An alternative version, HCFC-142b, will be phased out by the year 2020. All HCFCs will be banned by the year 2030.
EPA lists water, carbon dioxide and pentane as ozone-friendly foaming agents that can be used in place of HCFCs.
Crain inducted into AAF Hall of Fame
CHICAGO — Gertrude R. Crain, the late chairman emeritus of Crain Communications Inc., has been named as one of three new inductees into the American Advertising Federation's Advertising Hall of Fame, where she will join her late husband, company and Advertising Age founder G.D. Crain Jr., who was inducted in 1975.
Mrs. Crain, who died July 20, 1996, spent 40 years at Crain Communications, which publishes Plastics News, and served as the company's chairman from 1974 through 1996. AAF judges said Mrs. Crain was honored for her work in helping to boost the advertising business.
The AAF also selected Young & Rubicam Chairman Emeritus Alex Kroll and Paul Schrage, longtime senior exec VP-chief marketing officer for McDonald's Corp. All three will be inducted in ceremonies set for March 31 at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York.