Winners for each category, together with summary comments from the judging panel were:
Nonwoven roll goods:
Berry Plastics - Nuvisoft
This proprietary melt spun technology combines a unique filament profile geometry with a soft bond pattern for enhanced softness. Nuvisoft allows for enhanced coverage at lighter weights, lower air permeability, denser winding and facilitates improved printing.
Finished or composite products made from, or incorporating, nonwovens:
Glatfelter - Dreamweaver Gold 20 microns
A nonwoven separator for ultra-safe lithium ion batteries, Dreamweaver Gold provides outstanding safety and cycle life with low electrical impedance and high porosity in a uniform stable sheet.
Raw materials or components (e.g. fibre, binder, polymer, tape) of special relevance to the nonwovens industry and related converted products:
Magic - Spongel
A super absorbent polymer (SAP) made entirely from renewable resources, Spongel offers the highest level of absorption and retention of liquids available for bio-based materials. Mainly a cellulose-based material, it is suitable for both food packaging and hygiene applications.
Innovation in machinery of special relevance to the nonwovens industry:
GDM - Rear Wing Zero Waste
An upgrade for the baby diaper manufacturing line, the new kit saves on raw material usage and reduces size change time to zero. The all-new design includes linear motion technology for side shifting without replacing the mechanical cam and the possibility to automatically correct the rear wing position.
Hassan Group – Self Sufficient Relief Tents
The result of a social responsibility project aimed at providing eco-friendly nonwoven tent fabrics to improve living conditions in refugee camps. The fabrics provide comfort through improved heat and sound insulation, increased flame retardancy and enhanced breathability and anti-bacterial properties.
Sustainable process or management practice:
Suominen Corporation - Blind Hiring Recruitment Process
A pioneering recruitment process which increases diversity in the workforce and ensures equal opportunities for applicants of all genders, ethnicities and ages. The initiative offers a proven method to prevent prejudice and nepotism in the recruitment process.
In congratulating the winners, and recognizing the outstanding efforts of the nominees, Pierre Wiertz, general manager of EDANA, said “The winners and nominees recognized here today are testament to the commitment to innovation in our industry, but also to the ability of creative developers in the whole nonwovens supply chain to meet the challenges of our times, from resource management to energy storage, relief help and social responsibility. These products and services provide a snapshot of how our industry is changing and developing – it is a privilege to witness first-hand the fruit of these efforts and know that the success of our sector is in safe hands.”
The winners were presented with their specially commissioned bronze sculpture and a diploma at the awards ceremony, which was attended by industry media, exhibitors and visitors to the show.
The INDEX17 awards jury was comprised of a former senior nonwovens entrepreneur and manager, a representative of the nonwovens industry trade press, an international independent consultant and two top academic nonwovens R&D experts.