Since its opening in 2008, ColorMatrix Inc.'s Suzhou, China, plant has focused largely on the company's range of liquid colorants for PET. This year, however, the Suzhou plant is set to expand its offerings, bringing in the company's lines of PET resin enhancers and additives.
We are expanding our capability in Suzhou, said Steven Chai, managing director at ColorMatrix Plastic Colorant (Suzhou) Co. Ltd. By the end of 2010 we hope to have the complete range of products.
The products Chai is most anticipating include a range of PET barrier technologies intended to block light and absorb oxygen and ultraviolet light rays, extending the shelf-life of food and beverages. In addition, ColorMatrix is emphasizing environmentally friendly applications.
While we're protecting our coloring business, we're moving to open things up, Chai said at Chinaplas 2010, held April 19-22 in Shanghai. We're now aiming to promote these products in Asia.
The products on display included Joule RBH Reheat, an additive that aids PET recycling by promoting high heat uptake making it easier to reuse molded PET, according to the company. Process improvement additives include Eze, an additive intended to reduce friction during processing, and SmartHeat, designed to save energy by lowering processing temperatures.
The Suzhou plant employs more than 30. In this industry you need a lot of technical support, Chai said. Customers need advice on the mixture what percentage of our product they add.
Chai hopes the plant's new products will help the company expand its reach in the beverage market in Asia, particularly into beer and wine packaging.
There are a lot of advantages in using plastic bottles, Chai said. For family wine, plastic bottles are easier to handle and they can provide protection from UV and oxygen.
For those buying wine at their local grocer, a PET bottle could provide simpler and safer transport home. For public events, plastic bottles could also be safer, he noted.
The beer market in China is also attractive territory for the appropriate PET bottle, Chai said.
This could be a huge market, he said. With these markets and the new product lines, Chai believes Asia will steadily take up a larger portion of Berea, Ohio-based ColorMatrix's global business. We are around 15-20 percent now, he said. I could see this expanding to 30 percent in a few years.
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