For the 50th birthday bash the administration of Renolit invited leading members of the La Porte community over to their home on Boyd Blvd. Like any good host they served food, gave tours, and provided entertainment. They even had a gift to give the entire city.
Renolit’s Executive Board Member, Dr. Axel Bruder, announced that the company would be investing more than 20 million dollars into the La Porte factory this year, in celebration of its fifty years of production. Its parent company, once called Hedwin, is also having their 70th anniversary this year.
100 million dollars has already been invested into the plant but Renolit intends to do more. Their plans include another production line and more jobs for the citizens of La Porte.
Renaat Demeulemeester, President of the La Porte branch of Renolit, said, “I’ve been in La Porte for two years. When I meet with people in the community I notice many people have seen the name but almost no one knows what’s produced inside. Our goal is to give the community a sneak peek of what’s going on inside.”
What is going on on the line is the production of flexible film for a variety of uses. They make materials out of polyolefin and glass fibers that have practical and cosmetic function. It can be put on counter tops, cabinets, wall enforcement, and boats. People use the film to add unique designs to their cars.
A new honeycomb shaped product called Gorcell will be added to the plant in December. It is already doing well in Europe as the interior trim in automobiles.
“It’s a next generation material,” said Stephen Fore, the Technical Sales Manager for Renolit. “And it’s sustainable. We’re trying to promote a Circular Foundation Economy. That means every product comes back to us and can be used again.”
Renolit products are one hundred percent recyclable. They accept scrap at the plant and use it again right away.
They have also found a way to keep the glass fibers they use in their formula contained inside the finished sheets. That means the fibers out not contaminating the environment through shedding or scratching your hands when you touch the film.
Mayor Blair Milo said, “I’m so pleased to have this opportunity here today to thank [Renolit] for opening up your plant for tours so then folks who may not have the opportunity to understand the changes and innovations that have come forward in manufacturing are able to experience firsthand what advanced manufacturing is looking like.”
The first stop on the tour of the building was the expansive manufacturing building where the high quality Renolit films are made by well trained employees. Reminders of safety procedures are evident as you walk along the marked concrete path, a road painted to keep its travelers away from dangerous machinery.
“We take responsibility for the safety and protection of [our people],” Bruder said. “Nobility and housekeeping are firmly anchored in our corporate culture.”
Since the opening of American Renolit in 1999 the company has dropped incidence of accidents more than 50%. They have created more than one hundred jobs so far. They will be adding new buildings, new machines, and new opportunities for the La Porte community to grow with the manufacturing industry.