The company is investing $170m in a facility that it claims will solve the age-old dilemma of either choosing a surfactant for its performance or its sustainability credentials.
The facility is being built at Croda’s existing Atlas Point, New Castle site, and will produce 100% sustainable non-ionic surfactants for a cross-section of industries, from paint and household products, and which could be used as active emulsifiers in a broad selection of personal care products, from toothpastes to face creams.
Groundbreaking highlights Croda's sustainability goals
The company held an official groundbreaking ceremony at the site location last week, attended by Croda International chief executive Steve Foots, as well as the company’s president of personal care and actives, Kevin Gallagher, as well as Delaware Governor Jack Markell.
“This investment represents a tidal shift, especially for consumer goods manufacturers who are striving for sustainability and performance,” said Foots.
“At Croda, sustainability is fundamental to who we are and what we do, and we’re proud to be launching this first-of-its-kind initiative here in North America.”
Surfactants derived from bio-ethanol
The surfactants produced at the facility will be made from bio-ethanol, a process that has been meticulously developed to ensure that performance standards are not compromised.
This means that the company is moving away from its reliance on petrochemical-derived ingredients, in turn moving the surfactant production methods away from non-renewable fossil fuels.
Croda says that the initiative also builds on its investment and commitment to sustainability, which in recent years has included a number of initiatives at its existing facilities at the Atlas Point site.
In 2013 Croda invested over $2m in solar panels, while in 2012 it invested $8m in a renewable energy project using gas from landfill to generate electricity and steam.