On October 15 during IFAI Expo 2018’s Pre-Expo Conference in Dallas, Texas, a panel of three speakers presented an educational session on green practices in the industrial fabrics industry. Panel presenters included Ryan Derrick, business unit manager at Rainier Industries; Vince Hankins, director of industrial markets for Sunbrella; and Bimal Kad, president and CEO of EnKad Sciences. In an effort to promote green practices, many companies in the specialty fabrics industry have started to implement green initiatives with considerable success. During the session, Derrick, Hankins and Kad each highlighted the green practices their companies currently carry out.
Ryan Derrick from Rainier Industries, a provider of display, shade and shelter products based in Tukwila, Wash., shared a few of the many ways the company is invested in green practices. Committed to sustainability and dedicated to a Zero Landfill initiative, Rainier uses solvent-free inks and a closed powder-coat system. He also noted that the company recently changed all of its lighting to LED and invested in hard dinnerware for its lunchroom.
Vince Hankins from Sunbrella, a leader in performance fabrics based in Glen Raven, S.C., discussed the company’s philosophy of good environmental stewardship. Hankins noted that the company follows six environmental initiatives: Zero Landfill (all five Glen Raven domestic manufacturing centers are landfill-free), Solar Power (a one megawatt solar array can be found at its Anderson, S.C., facility), Wastewater Reduction (the company’s unique coloring process conserves water), Less Waste (Sunbrella fabrics are designed to last longer), Wildlife Conservation (the company works to preserve the environment around its facilities) and Recycle Sunbrella (a program that allows people to recycle their used Sunbrella fabrics).
Bimal Kad from EnKad Sciences, a waste-to-value conversion company based in San Diego, Calif., shared a few of the many ways EnKad offers green solutions to post industrial waste disposal challenges faced by the industrial fabrics industry. Primarily focused on extracting maximum value, EnKad offers strategies of reuse, reclaim, recycle and regeneration. Several unique solutions for recycling include PVC-coated fabric trim that can be repurposed for charpais and assorted edge trim repurposing for chindi rugs handmade in India.