Berry Global Group Inc., North America's largest plastic film manufacturer, is spending $20 million to add capacity for breathable films.
The company's Sof-Flex ultra-lightweight, breathable film is made of polyethylene and used in the hygiene market. The company will add capacity at plants in Augusta, Ky.; Nashville, Tenn.; McAlester, Okla.; and Washington, Ga., according to the Evansville, Ind.-based company.
During phase one of the project, the company will invest in capacity for breathable film manufacturing as well as the installation of the newest flexographic printing equipment, the company said in response to questions.
"Our focus on serving the North American market with advanced technology remains a high priority for our business," Curt Begle, president of Berry's Health, Hygiene, and Specialties division, said in a news release.
The investment fits into Berry's Impact 2025 sustainability strategy, which calls for a focus on three areas in hygiene: lightweighting, sustainable materials and designing products that are easily recyclable, reusable or compostable. Berry said expanding capacity for down-weighted, breathable films reduces material use and allows it to use "sustainable raw materials without compromising product performance."
The company said the expansion will be operational in 2020. Berry reported 2019 sales of $12.6 billion, including $2.9 billion in North American film manufacturing, according to the most recent Plastics News ranking.