A successful plant within a plant operation is leading color and additive concentrates maker Plastics Color Corp. to expand the project.
Calumet City, Ill.-based PCC launched the concept last year at its plant in Asheboro, N.C. The project covers 7,000 square feet and includes a twin-screw production line and a single-screw pilot line.
Phase two of the project, to open in 2010, will cover an additional 15,000 square feet and include two more twin-screw production lines.
PCC has invested $2 million into the initial phase and will spend almost $3 million on the next part, President Doug Borgsdorf said in a recent interview.
We asked customers what they wanted to see from a company that's been around for more than 30 years, he said. They said they wanted a clean, computer-controlled operation.
PCC has used the plant within a plant to test new products and technology and to produce specialty materials for the medical and food packaging markets. Since opening in mid-2008, most of the unit's products have been based on polyethylene or poly-propylene.
The new operation provided a polylactic acid-based composite used by Clemson University and Gala Herbs Inc. to make bioresin composite bottles. Other new PCC materials have been used in pharmaceutical packaging and IV components.
The project has created two new jobs at the Asheboro site, with a third new employee set to join by the end of August.
Prior to opening the plant within a plant, PCC's production of specialty materials in Asheboro was done in the same areas of the plant used to make commodity-style products. Borgsdorf called the setup less than ideal.
The Asheboro facility includes three buildings and covers 140,000 square feet. Companywide, the firm employs 130 at plants in Calumet City, Asheboro and Nanjing, China. PCC posted sales of about $40 million in 2008.
PCC has enjoyed recent success with masterbatch additives that use Paraloid, an impact modifer supplier by Rohm and Haas Inc. The material has provided better strength in clamshells and other food packaging products, PCC officials said.
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