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Northern Powerhouse European Union

Bury polystyrene firm wins green award

Molygran, a specialist in expanded polystyrene foam solutions for packaging, display and construction, scooped the Environmental Impact gong at the Made in Bury Business Awards 2018.

Molygran, a specialist in expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam solutions for packaging, display and construction, scooped the Environmental Impact gong at the Made in Bury Business Awards 2018.

As well as winning the Manufacturing Award and awarded highly commended in the Family Business category, Molygran was recognised for its efforts to not only improve internal waste and energy use, but also for finding new ways to use EPS as a low carbon, energy-saving product.

Established almost 40 years ago in 1979, the business has become a go-to company for custom and innovative design polystyrene solutions. It has experienced massive change over the last year, growing by more than 25 per cent, redeveloping the site and moving into a number of new sales markets.

Insulation breakthrough

One of the new areas of growth is the use of EPS as a low carbon insulation material for the construction sector, a project which was developed with support from environmental business advisors at GC Business Growth Hub. 

“During a recent renovation of our factory we added insulation to our roof, which led us into developing a new product - a retrofit insulation solution for single skin commercial buildings”, said managing director Keith Fairhurst.

“Contrary to popular belief, EPS has great environmental benefits. In buildings, its insulating properties can help to cut energy use. It’s also recyclable at the end of its use with the right infrastructure in place.”

‘Duty to educate’

As well as maximising the environmental benefits of its products, the company has always been environmentally conscious of its own internal operations.

“Being part of the plastics industry, we believe we have a duty to educate about the importance of sustainability and how others can improve their environmental footprint”, Keith Fairhurst added. 

“Since 2014 our material loss has been cut by a third. We have invested substantially in ensuring our ‘scrap’ polystyrene is kept to a minimum and reused or recycled. We have also changed our heating system and installed LED lighting in both our offices and the factory, which has massively reduced our energy consumption. We aim to become energy self-sufficient by 2021 through working with our neighbours to generate solar power and renewable heat.”

Molygran is now working towards the ISO 14001 environmental management standard to cement its achievements. 

To find out more about the Hub’s support for Greater Manchester SMEs, or to read other success stories, click here.