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Green cost savings

Graphics | May 1, 2009 | By:

What cost-saving techniques does your company implement regarding recycling and textiles?

“Never throw out any fabric scraps” is a policy at Glawe Tent and Awning. A bin of fabric scraps has resulted in a remnant sale of small lots of industrial fabrics to the public, a source of supplies for a neighborhood sheltered workshop and bags for local churches during hurricane relief.

—Kathy Schaefer, IFM, president, Glawe Tent and Awning, Dayton, Ohio.

We have improved sustainability operations by going to a new lighting system. The new system was less costly to install and one-third the cost to operate. A new program, computer processing of all orders, has reduced paper consumption. The aim is to be paperless. Fabric Images now rents custom exhibits instead of just selling them, which eliminates used components from being wasted and allows the use of fewer raw materials, as we are able to continually recycle.

—Pat Hayes, CPP, chairman, Fabric Images Inc., Elgin, Ill.

Our costume department has a refurbishing program in which costumes are returned for cleaning and repair. Reusable cases are offered for sale when new costumes are purchased, which reduces the number of card-board boxes that are needed for shipping. We installed an on-demand hot water heater and an energy saving lighting program, along with night and weekend setback thermostats.

—John Abel, materials manager, Olympus Flag & Banner, Milwaukee, Wis.

We have developed products that reduce our carbon footprint and shipping costs. The shipping program was developed around a hub and spoke concept to further reduce shipping costs and carbon footprint.

—Andy Graham, president, Portland Color, Portland, Maine

At Aurora Specialty Textiles, we put in place a program called FabRecycle, whereby we take back polyester fabric from customers, bale it, accumulate it along with scrap generated in our own fabric finishing operations, and then ship it to textile fiber recycling sites, where it is ground up and made into other useful products.

—Jeff Leagon, vice president of business development, Aurora Specialty Textiles, Conover, N.C.

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