Injection Molder Shows How Plastics, Sustainability Can Go Together

Plastics might be many environmentalist’s Public Enemy No. 1, but in Illinois, Hoffer Plastics was just recognized for showing how sustainable the material, and those who process it, can be.

Of late, if a governor, or any legislator, is talking about plastics, it’s more likely than not to be in the context of a ban or fee, but on October 27, custom injection molder Hoffer Plastics was recognized with an Illinois Governor’s Sustainability Award for its eco-minded efforts, joining companies like Abbott Labs, Caterpillar, and Silgan Containers.

 

Established in 1987, the Illinois Governor's Sustainability Award recognizes private and public Illinois organizations that have implemented outstanding and innovative sustainable techniques or technologies, demonstrating a commitment to sustaining environmental, social and economic health. Per the Awards’ website:

 

Governor's Sustainability Award winners are an elite group of committed leaders reducing environmental impact and contributing to the growth of a more sustainable Illinois economy. By prioritizing sustainability throughout their operations, programs, technology, products and company culture, they serve as a model within their industry and community.

 

Approaching Zero Landfill
Hoffer’s efforts towards sustainability are certainly award worthy. Going back to 2007, when the third-generation family-owned company in South Elgin, Ill. published its first Sustainability Report, Hoffer has been committed to greener operations. Among the highlights in its 2015 award-winning submission:

 

By 2010, after initiating a facility wide 100% recycling program in 2007, less than 1% of the 24 million lbs. of the resin used in manufacturing ended up in landfill.

 

In 2012, the facility’s old lighting was replaced with high efficiency fluorescent lighting, generating annual savings of approximately 1.7 million kilowatt hours of electricity and 1200 metric tons of carbon dioxide.

 

In 2014, it implemented a high cycle water treatment program, saving an estimated 1.2 million gallons of water, annually.

 

Going forward, Hoffer’s sustainability goals for the year 2020 include a 50% reduction in overall water usage and a further 20% reduction in energy consumption per unit of production. 

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