Asian housewares makers embracing use of UL eco-label for PP products made using Milliken’s Millad® NX® 8000 clarifier

Ghent, Belgium – The energy-saving benefits of Milliken's Millad® NX® 8000 clarifier for polypropylene (PP) have long been known and documented. But now downstream customers, particularly in Asia, are realizing the upside of this, and are beginning to leverage this to their manufacturing advantage and the resulting UL Environmental Claim Validation (ECV) label to their marketing advantage.

Milliken Chemical has collaborated with the China Plastic Housewares Association to help broaden awareness of the energy consumption reductions that can be achieved by using Millad NX 8000 in a transparent PP product. The independent organisation UL Environment, a business unit of UL (Underwriters Laboratories), has documented that use of Millad NX 8000 clarifier can result in energy savings of between 8-12% in injection molded, transparent PP products.

“The association is dedicated to helping the entire plastic housewares industry in China become more efficient and eco-friendlier, and thus the UL label means a lot in terms of demonstrating a commitment to energy saving,” says Kurt Xu, China Business Leader, Milliken. “While this effort is still in its early stages, five of the association’s leading member companies have now agreed that they will get the UL label authorization for those plastic parts they produce using Millad NX 8000 as clarifier.”

“So far, a dozen or so upstream makers of clarified PP resin have adopted the UL label,” Vincent Wang, Asia Marketing Leader, Milliken, adds, “and a few leading houseware brands in China, Taiwan and Thailand – including Picnic Plast Industrial Co. Ltd. in Thailand and Citylong Group in China – have been authorised to use it. We are seeing more and more international brands showing interests, as well.”

Milliken first earned UL validation for the energy-saving benefits of Millad NX 8000 in 2013. Downstream molders and brand owners now clearly are beginning to embrace the value of the concept.

Millad NX 8000 has been proven to deliver positive environmental- and performance-related benefits to polypropylene. Its step-change to the performance and haze of PP supports the development of high-clarity, high-quality plastic houseware products. Importantly, use of the additive also allows conversion temperatures to be lowered in injection molding. This reduces processors’ energy use and any accompanying CO₂ emissions. Numerous industrial trials indicate that use of Millad NX 8000 can lower required processing temperatures from 235°C to 190°C (455° F to 374° F), resulting in the above-noted energy savings of between 8 and 12%, while also lowering associated CO₂ emissions.
At a time when energy saving and sustainability are high on the agenda for all in the industry, these are huge advances.

Milliken previously noted, upon first receiving the certification, that the UL Environmental Claim Validation provides the assurance of independent confirmation of environmental credentials by a third party in markets deluged by unsubstantiated eco-claims. Milliken stresses it is committed to developing innovations that support more sustainable processing and a reduction in environmental impact for the plastics industry. Having UL Environment verify the positive energy savings of Millad NX 8000 was a major step in that direction.

“We are pleased to see more and more brand owners and customers embrace the environmental benefits of Millad NX 8000-clarified PP resin,” notes Rui Guo, China Downstream Leader “and realize how they can leverage that to differentiate themselves in a crowded, competitive marketplace by displaying the ECV label on their products.”

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