Silicone release paper is used as a backing on sticky products; it supports the adhesive until it is peeled away exposing the tacky surface. It is widely used in many industries for adhesive backed products but also used in large quantities for the manufacturing process of composite materials used extensively in wind turbine and aircraft production.
It is a very difficult material to recycle with most silicone release papers being sent to landfill or for incineration.
The Swansea-based business is made up of a team that is led by directors Mark and Roger who have over twenty years of experience in the waste management and heath & safety sectors. They have developed many solutions for non-recyclable products finding ways they could be reused and in doing so, they identified silicone release paper waste and the significant environmental impact it was having.
The family owned firm was formed off the back of this discovery in 2009. Their ambition was to develop innovative technology for recycling of waste silicone release paper. They worked through the research and development phase, progressed through prototyping and then in 2016 invested in bespoke equipment to start recycling and supplying their product into the market place. They are now manufacturing a high quality specification 100% recycled silicone release paper.
A patent was granted to Techlan for the innovation in March 2018.
Techlan receives the waste rolls of release paper into its plant in Swansea, which it then cleans using its patented technology. It does not destroy the waste release paper; it simply cleans both sides allowing it to be re-used. The process uses no water or chemicals and is very energy efficient. The recycled release paper is then slit and converted to size allowing it be re-used once again into either the same or another product.
Techlan's recycled product can 100% replace a prime grade release paper. It is significantly more economic offering a higher quality at a lower price and has a positive environmental impact. Furthermore, when purchasing prime grade release papers businesses have to order huge minimum order quantities and there are lead times of 8-12 weeks. Techlan offers a far more flexible solution through small minimum order quantities and a delivery lead-time of only 4 weeks.
Techlan paper is a perfect example of a Circular Economy product. The same paper can be used several times. It is supplied back to the sector that originally created the waste or as a raw material in other sectors. Incredibly this is not just done once but many times using the original waste paper.
The expanding firm now has two production lines at its Swansea site and can offer both sheeted and reeled product. The latest exciting development is the introduction of machinery to supply product to the Ecommerce sector for packaging manufacture. And their reputation has spread far and wide having supplied paper not only throughout the EU but as far afield as Tasmania.
Techlan exemplify what it means to be an innovative, forward-thinking business, and are continuing to expand across their industrial unit. The industry leaders are also award winners, most recently having been named Environmental Business of the Year at the 2020 FSB Celebrating Small Business Awards. Businesses like Techlan are at the very forefront of Wales’ economy, and will no doubt continue to lead on some of the most innovative ways to support our environment.
The company has received significant support from Welsh Government and WRAP Cymru.
For further information on Techlan and its recycled silicone release liners please contact Roger Banks on 01792 366999 or email [email protected].