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Consumer Product Design of the Year

Magmatic, for the Trunki Mk V. Production of the well-known ‘ride-on’ children’s suitcase was brought back to the UK from China, requiring a complete – and costly – re-tooling exercise. The product was completely re-engineered and 25 metal screws and adhesives were replaced with plastic parts enabling the case to be snapped together at assembly. UK-made Trunkis are 100% recyclable and old units can be returned to the factory to be ground up and moulded into new ones.

Industrial Product Design

F-Board Limited for the F-Board, a safe replacement for the traditional wooden scaffolding board, made from 100% recycled PVC. The boards have a non-slip surface and are warranted for four years compared with a lifetime of around 12 months for traditional wooden scaffolding. The company also buys used boards back for recycling.

Young Designer of the Year

Nathan Bestwick for his MillMii pepper mill, designed to be used with ease by people with dexterity problems and weakness in their hands – but also to look good too. With firm interest from John Lewis and Lakeland, sales of 15,000 units are predicted for its launch year.

Apprentice or Trainee of the Year

Paul Brown, of Duo Plastics. Initially employed as a machine operator in the conversion shop, Paul’s potential was quickly spotted by the engineering team. Tutors at the college where he is now studying for his technical qualifications on day release have been equally impressed. According to Duo Plastics, Paul’s aptitude for engineering, dedication and commitment and his desire to learn have marked him out as “an excellent role model” for the company’s workforce.

Best Environmental or Energy Efficiency Programme

Artenius PET Packaging Europe, for a series of measures to reduce energy consumption and material usage and to implement recycling initiatives, contributing to a 23% reduction in waste.

Best Business Initiative

Artenius PET Packaging Europe, for its wide-mouth ‘glass-look’ PET jar, hot-fillable to 95 Deg C, deemed a major technological step forward in PET. Judges said Artenius could “make genuine gains in market share thanks to its offering that offers both environmental as well as safety and cost benefits.”

Best Training and Development Programme

Logoplaste UK for it bespoke rotary extrusion training scheme that interlinks with the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF) programme.

Best Technology Application

The R&D Factory, for its Streamoulding process, which controls the physical reaction occurring when tap water and polymer melt are combined to produce foamed plastic using normal injection moulding process parameters. Judges said that the innovative process using the environmentally friendly medium of tap water would be “an interesting competitor to carbon dioxide foaming.”

Supplier Partnership: Polymer Distributor

Distrupol, for its work with Adlens’s ‘Vision for a Nation’ programme to provide cheap spectacles for communities in some of the world’s poorest countries. Judges noted in particular how “a significant part of the advice given to the charity resulted in no commercial benefit to Distrupol.”

Supplier Partnership: Polymer Producer

Axion Polymers, for its work with Marks & Spencer (M&S), using its high-quality 100% recycled polymer Axpoly PS01, derived from waste fridge plastic, as a direct replacement for virgin ABS in a new M&S gift range.

Supplier Partnership: Prime Machinery

Arburg, for its work with customer John Guest on a project which saw cycle times, material usage and waste, and energy consumption all reduced, in some cases dramatically.

Supplier Partnership: Ancillary Machinery

TH Plastics, for its work with customer Denso Manufacturing to design and develop a manufacturing solution that cut labour and energy costs, increased efficiency and improved product quality.

Supplier Partnership: Toolmaker

Midas Pattern Company for its work with Randox Laboratories centred on the manufacture of the world’s first fully automated random-access biochip testing platform. In particular work in the early design phases eliminated problems which might have occurred later in tool manufacture meaning that no modifications were required to the 26 parts produced.

Personal Contribution Award

Gerry Moore, chief executive of Distrupol Europe, whose “constant pursuit of excellence and passion for innovation have singled him out as a true leader in his field”, according to David Jukes, president – Europe, ME/A, Univar. Gerry was one of the first to sign up to support the Plastics Industry Awards 12 years ago.

Processor of the Year

Nifco UK, for an investment programme that included a new, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility, the biggest investment by the UK’s injection moulding sector for many years which saw the creation of more than 100 new jobs. Judges said the firm was a “shining example of success in the domestic automotive industry”. Through its close relationship with nearby Nissan, Nifco is heavily involved in the development of electric power sources and its new plant features a number of charging points among a strong commitment to environmental considerations.

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