In a sure sign of warm weather, this month's Best Practices takes you to the HC Cos., which manufactures planters, growing pots and hanging baskets.
HC has invested in new Netstal and KraussMaffei injection molding machines as the company replaces some of its aging fleet of machines at its plant in Middlefield, Ohio.
HC specializes in multicavity, thin-wall and stack-molded horticultural containers. The company serves the greenhouse, nursery and consumer markets with brands such as Dillen, Pro Cal and Akro-Mils Lawn & Garden.
Those brands had been part of Akron, Ohio-based Myers Industries Inc. In 2015, Myers sold the lawn and garden segment to Dallas private equity firm Wingate Partners V LP, and it was renamed HC Cos. HC is based in Twinsburg, Ohio.
Jason Brooker, HC's vice president of manufacturing, said company officials initially were looking at Netstal injection presses for molding high-speed, thin-wall parts. HC bought two Netstal Elios presses in 650 and 750 metric tons of clamping force.
Netstal and KraussMaffei share the same parent company, KraussMaffei Group. For the rest of HC's needs, the Netstal regional manager directed them to look into KM presses.