Council forming to promote bioplastics
WASHINGTON — The Society of the Plastics Industry Inc. has formed a new special-interest group, the Bioplastics Council, to promote the development of bioplastics as an integral part of the industry.
The six founding member companies of the new group are Arkema Group, BASF Corp., Cereplast Inc., DuPont Co., NatureWorks LLC and Telles, the joint venture between Metabolix Inc. and Archer Daniels Midland Co.
``Bioplastics have been developed for a range of commercial applications, and the market for products made from these materials continues to expand as retailer and consumer demand for them increases,'' SPI President Bill Carteaux said in a Sept. 16 news release.
According to Washington-based SPI, applications to join the council will be accepted beginning Oct. 1. Interested companies do not have to be SPI members to join.
MPM's new HQ triples production space
BAY CITY, MICH. Michigan Plastics Machinery Co., the downstream extrusion equipment maker acquired last year by Conair Group Inc., has moved to a larger headquarters factory in Bay City.
The 18,000-square-foot building triples the company's manufacturing space, with higher work bays and easier truck access. The new headquarters includes more office space to accommodate customer meetings and training sessions.
The company has another 9,000 square feet available for future growth, said Steve Sickles, who founded MPM in 2000.
Conair, based in Cranberry Township, Pa., near Pittsburgh, makes downstream equipment for small profiles and tubing, as well as standardized products that can be delivered quickly.
MPM designs and delivers downstream lines for pipe, PVC fence, windows and other larger profiles. MPM specializes in highly customized products.
The high work bays will enable MPM to build larger equipment for its markets in pipe and large profiles, he said.
Veka Innovations closing Ohio facility
YOUNGSTOWN, OHIO Veka Innovations Inc. is closing its fence, deck and railing vinyl extrusion facility in Youngstown on Sept. 25, according to a letter filed with the state of Ohio under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act.
The plant is closing due to ``an unforeseeable business circumstance,'' said the letter, signed by Charles Spaulding, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Veka Holdings Inc.
The plant, formerly a VinylSource Inc. operation, employs 72, the WARN notice said. Officials expect the plant closing to be permanent. Veka Innovations is a subsidiary of Fombell, Pa.-based Veka Inc.
Marketing director Steve Dillon said in a brief Sept. 18 telephone interview that Veka was preparing a news release, but it was unavailable before Plastics News' deadline.
Plans for the facility and assets were unavailable.
Dr. Schneider to put new site in Bulgaria
KRONACH-NEUSES, GERMANY German interior car component molder Dr. Schneider Kunstoffwerke GmbH is preparing to invest around 10 million euros ($7 million ) to set up a new plant in Bulgaria.
Dr. Schneider, which already runs Central European operations in Bratislava, Slovakia, and Radomierz, Poland, is targeting the region near the southern city of Stara Zagora, Bulgaria. It is expected to produce parts there for some BMW models.
The injection molder manufactures a range of parts including car glove boxes, cup holders, ash trays, center consoles, roof and tank modules and ventilation systems.
Dr. Schneider of Kronach-Neuses is considering establishing its plant in the village of Elenino, outside Stara Zagora, and will employ up to 500 there. The firm will make a decision after it is offered a site in mid-October.
Elsewhere, the company has production units in Howell, Mich.; Valencia, Spain; São Paulo, Brazil; and Xiamen, China. In Germany, at its main Kronach-Neuses factory, Dr. Schneider runs 102 injection presses with up to 1,600 metric tons of clamping force.
In 2007, the company achieved sales of almost 300 million euros ($207 million).