We think about the future, not only with forward-looking technologies, but also by acting responsibly. That is why sustainability is a key aspect of our corporate strategy.
When it comes to innovations and cutting-edge technology, sustainability and economic efficiency must go hand in hand. We make our contribution to this every day – economically, ecologically and socially.
At the beginning of 2021, Hosokawa Alpine AG received the results of its carbon footprint, which we had prepared on the basis of data from 2019. This comprehensive analysis of our ecological footprint was the starting point for us to establish a climate strategy. At the heart of this strategy is a clear commitment to become more sustainable and thus make our contribution to the global goal of CO2 neutrality.
We were already able to follow up this commitment with the sustainable conversion to 100% green electricity in 2021.
That is why we have developed a climate strategy that includes further concrete steps and longer-term considerations by Hosokawa Alpine AG towards CO2 neutrality.
On the basis of our CO2 balance, we have concretised our thoughts on climate neutrality. Our clear objective is to achieve complete CO2 neutrality for Hosokawa Alpine AG by 2030 at the latest. Derived from this, our CO2 balance is to be halved within the next three years. The CO2 emissions from the year 2019 will serve as our reference value.
Step 2: Changed travel behaviour
The COVID-19 pandemic certainly contributed a lot to savings in business travel, hotel accommodation and the daily commute of employees. However, we assume that travel behaviour has changed in the long term and that emissions in this area can be reduced by at least a third.
In order to follow up our pronounced climate strategy and objective in a location-related framework and with allied partners, we as Hosokawa Alpine AG have joined the Blue City Klimapakt Augsburger Wirtschaft. This is an alliance of regional representatives from business and research with the city of Augsburg. The climate pact has set itself the goal of achieving the city's climate protection goals, supporting competitiveness and promoting the professional exchange of companies in the long term.
In addition, we have gained other strong and regional partners through our membership in the A³ klimaneutral (climate-neutral) initiative. We are aware of our responsibility as follows:
"We are a member of the A³ klimaneutral initiative and draw up an annual greenhouse gas balance according to the A³ standard. Our goal is to achieve climate neutrality by 2030 through reductions. We transparently communicate our measures, goals and activities on the website www.A3-klimaneutral.de".
In the future, we will go one step further and balance additional categories of the Scope 3 Greenhouse Gas Protocol. This will give us an even more comprehensive view of our CO2 footprint and new levers for potential savings. (We want to stick to the targets we have already set.)
Various certificates are traded on the market that invest in ecological projects around the world. In this way, companies provide a kind of compensation for the CO2 they produce.
However, this is not the primary intention of Hosokawa Alpine AG. As a manufacturing company, we will always produce a residual amount of CO2 or CO2 equivalents. Nevertheless, we will first primarily tackle the things that are in our own hands. Only then do we include a well-considered compensation in our considerations.
We have been purchasing CO2-neutral green electricity since 2021. But we are not content with that. Instead, we are asking ourselves the question: Where and in what form can we further reduce power consumption in the company?
Actions and measures:
- Conversion to energy-saving LED lighting, completed in 2022
- Implementation of daylight-dependent controls and motion detectors in various factory buildings
- Expansion of own electricity generation, e.g. through operation of further photovoltaic systems on our premises. A solar panel with an area of 4,574 m2 and a peak power output of 490 kW is already installed on the roofs of our production halls
- Optimisation of stand-by consumption at weekends
- Change in personal behaviour of employees
In the short and medium term, we see the greatest potential in this balance sheet item, which we can significantly influence through self-directed measures. The goal is to achieve a reduction of 40-50 % by 2023.
Actions and measures:
- Feeding production waste from the blown film test centre into the recycling loop. A first step has already been taken with the commissioning of baling presses for paper and film in the incoming goods department.
- Optimising the amount of material used in customer trials and obliging customers to take back the material
- Rainwater utilisation in new buildings
Our buildings at Peter-Doerfler-Strasse in Augsburg are mostly heated with gas or oil. In the logistics centre, a heat pump is already being used in conjunction with the latest gas condensing boiler technology. The future focus here will be on new buildings and infrastructure refurbishments in particular.
Actions and measures:
- Evaluation of a heat pump concept in terms of permissibility and feasibility in the new construction of our canteen in Augsburg
- Abandonment of poorly insulated old buildings by 2025 at the latest
- Investment in local ecological projects, such as forest reforestation, as compensation for the use of gas as fuel
- Appeal to the personal behaviour of employees
The pandemic has also made us rethink the topic of business travel. Here, we are addressing key questions about future travel needs and the means of transport chosen.
Actions and measures:
- Evaluate the use of rail instead of air for short-haul travel and revise the travel policy accordingly
- Evaluation of CO2 compensation for unavoidable trips
- Equipping the company car fleet with two e-vehicles
- Proportionate participation in virtual trade fairs or hybrid events
The contribution of our employees' commutes to our carbon footprint is manageable. Nevertheless, there is room for improvement here as well.
Actions and measures:
- Company agreement on up to 10 days of mobile working per month
- Evaluation of a job ticket for public transport
- Revised car policy with the possibility of integrating pure e-vehicles into the company car fleet
- Installation of a charging station for e-bike batteries
Many smaller ideas and efforts add up over time. In this way, each individual can make a contribution to the climate strategy of Hosokawa Alpine AG!
Actions and measures:
- Automatic presetting of all printers for double-sided printing
- Replacement of diesel-powered forklifts with electric forklifts
- Conversion of the shuttle transport to the logistics centre to a lorry drive with e-motor or hydrogen
- Targeted awareness training for employees and managers
- Special campaign "Most valid suggestions for climate neutrality" in the company suggestion scheme
- Definition of internal KPIs to make progress in CO2 reduction transparent
Our commitment to climate and sustainability does not end at the company gates. We also help to save energy and conserve resources with our machines and systems. This benefits not only our customers, but all of us.
In order to minimise our environmental impact, we are continuously reducing the energy requirements of our plants. This is how we support our customers save energy:
- Process effectiveness program
to continuously improve the energy efficiency of our technologies
- Drive power adaptation
to the minimum level required
- Energy-efficient extruders for blown film lines
Reduce energy consumption by up to 20% with the HX Select high-performance extruder at significantly reduced melt temperatures.
- Energy-efficient classifiers
Energy savings of up to 25% compared to established machine generations with the Calciplex ACP due to proprietary classifier wheel technology for the minerals and metals industry
- Vertical roller mill for the minerals and metals industry
The AWM-F reduces energy consumption by up to 25% compared to ball mill systems
- Modernisation and software updates
Support with evaluation of installed systems and ongoing processes by our service team, recommendation of energy-efficient improvement measures
We support our customers in the efficient recycling of production waste.
- Optimum processing of PCR (post-consumer recycling)
with the HX Select high-performance extruder for film production
- Further processing and reuse of edge trim
in blown film production
- Project planning and manufacture of recycling systems
for the efficient treatment of production waste as part of the closed material cycle
- Refining Recovered Carbon Black
When using the ACM classifier mill and TDG fluidised bed counter-jet mill with an integrated classifier in the chemical industry
- Participation in the PRS Green Label Initiative
for the return and recycling of transport pallets
- Consistent waste separation and recycling
in our own plants, including metals and other raw materials along the production process
Flexible packaging protects food or secures goods during transport. As a result, customers value durability and performance above all. However, these properties are the problem when it comes to disposal. That is why we are convinced that flexible packaging must be part of a circular economy in future. How are we contributing? We are working on film solutions that can be recycled and reused at the same level.
- Cooperation with partners along the entire value chain
- High-performance monomaterial solutions made of polyethylene (Full PE)
- Blown film lines for producing biopolymer films
For us, sustainability also means assuming social responsibility, responsibility for our employees, but also for future generations and for our region. As a successful company, we like to give something back to society.
- Continuous training and development
We prioritise consistent training and development of our employees. We train our own staff. For example, about 10% of our workforce are apprentices. This means that we have one of the highest training rates in the Augsburg region.
- Focus on employee satisfaction and health
Healthy and satisfied employees are more motivated on the job. That is why we make a targeted contribution to boosting the health and performance of our employees, e.g. with an annual health day. The low fluctuation in our company proves us right.
- Support for social projects
At our headquarters in Augsburg, we support schools, kindergartens and cultural institutions. In addition, the individual Hosokawa Alpine locations support local social projects with donations from the regional companies and Hosokawa Alpine. Our employees donate their time and thus breathe life into the projects.
- Investing in the future
Thinking about tomorrow – this also includes ensuring the long-term success of the company and good working conditions. That is why we regularly invest in the site. In this way, we always keep research and development facilities, buildings, machines and infrastructure at the cutting edge of technology.