Our Company’s business is based on a growing attention to sustainability issues that have become strategic development drivers, leading from 2020, to the decision to publish our Annual Sustainability Report.
Despite the complexities generated by the pandemic – which unfortunately also characterized all of 2021 – Irplast S.p.A. is taking the opportunity to imagine an increasingly sustainable future, pursuing our strategy aimed at reducing the impact of our products and activities for the benefit of our customers, for the environment and for the community.
Starting from groundwork already in place, the Company created – starting from the commissioning of several scientific studies of LIFE Cycle Assessment to measure the environmental impact of the products offered – innovative solutions that make those products more sustainable. In fact, we have worked to minimize the use of base raw materials in our products, with a broadbased reduction of weight and thickness, and we have rationalized their design, so as to maximize recyclability, especially focusing on the concept of mono-materials. Furthermore also this year we have chosen to source the maximum amount possible on the commodity market of recycled and non-fossil origin materials to replace the usual virgin polymers, so as to minimize the impact on scarcity of fossil fuels and reduce emissions linked to the production and consumption during the life cycle of the products. In our company mission, focused on increasing our know-how to fuel continuous growth, Research and Development plays a crucial role, through a focus on the design and improvement of circular practices, aimed at giving new life to waste materials from our production processes. We are, of course, aware that a satisfactory level of sustainability will be achieved only when these basic concepts and practices are applied right along our entire value chain. With this in mind, thanks to the constant dialogue with our stakeholders, we have achieved important milestones regarding both collaborations with suppliers for making new materials more eco-compatible, and with customers for the adoption of sustainability principles in their products.
The current difficulties in procuring raw materials from non-fossil sources, on the one hand, and the increase in the costs of energy and traditional raw materials, on the other, are just two of the many challenges faced in recent years, which require determined and resolute choice-making in line with the definition of strategic objectives. These difficulties, if well addressed, canlead to innovative solutions also in terms of added value, which can strengthen the position of Irplast S.p.A. on the market and the Company’s standing with its own partners and customers.
The Company’s ability to cope and overcome the challenges were evident in October 2021, when – at the Empoli plant – we successfully managed a potentially disastrous fire, thanks to the effectiveness of our security procedures and systems. The cooperation of trained Irplast staff, the correct functioning of the protocols and the timely intervention of the fire brigade made it possible to contain the damage, safeguarding the safety of all our staff. Fortunately, the production at the site has returned to normal operation in record time. This episode led the Company to a further reorganization of the plant e to a more precise monitoring of risk areas: good practices and a sustainable vision ensure the best responses in difficult and unpredictable situations. We are aware that none of the goals achieved in 2021 it would have been possible without the heart and soul of the Company, our colleagues, for whom we are committed to offering the highest possible levels of well-being, ensuring a stimulating and progressive workplace where individual needs are catered for and where people feel valued. The fostering of a relationship based on listening and on mutual trust is essential for growth together, in the same direction, and also to overcome any obstacles we meet along the way.
We have the ambition of wanting to make Irplast S.p.A. a company with a high sustainability value by continuing to innovate, by anticipating the upcoming challenges of the sector, by keeping our focus on the control and measurement of our activities, and by measuring our sustainability performances from an economic, social and environmental point of view. The activities described in this Sustainability Report 2021 underline all the commitment of Irplast S.p.A., present and future, in the quest for solutions that guarantee a positive impact on all the issues for governance, products, environment and people.