Protective packaging producer Styropack (UK) Ltd. is investing £1.7 million ($2.9 million) to install energy-saving foam manufacturing machinery at three of its six United Kingdom plants.
The project includes buying new, faster foam molding machines from German supplier Erlenbach to replace existing lines up to 20 years old. One new Erlenbach 1395/C-E machine was delivered to Styropack's Aberdeen headquarters site in January, and six more will be installed there later this year.
The molder said it plans to introduce seven more of the machines at its southern facility in Ford, England, during 2006. Another Erlenbach molding machine was supplied to Styropack's plant in Blackburn, England, in December.
The expansion follows Styropack's closing of a Durham, England, facility in September, with the loss of 14 jobs.
Gavin Birnie, managing director of Styropack (UK), said the new machines will ``offset some of the huge increases in energy costs that we have not been able to recoup in the marketplace.''
Styropack (UK), which molds expanded polystyrene, expanded polypropylene and expanded polyethylene packaging, employs about 300 at six U.K. facilities and operates 150 foam molding machines. It also has plants in Glasgow, Scotland; Grimsby, England; and Aberdare, Wales.
Styropack is part of Synbra Group BV of Etten-Leur, the Netherlands. Synbra has 32 production sites across Europe.