INDUSTRY NEWS 26 images JUNE2024 First commercial-scale plant recycling polyester garment waste opens The first commercial-scale recycling plant for post-consumer polyester garments and textiles has opened, providing raw materials for clothing production. With operations in Kettering in Northamptonshire, Project Re:claim is a joint venture between Salvation Army Trading Company (SatCol), the trading arm of The Salvation Army, and garment recycling specialist Project Plan B. The machine turns polyester waste into polyester pellets which can be spun into yarn for use in textiles along with other industrial applications. The pellets are expected to be integrated into the manufacturing processes of new products later this year. The system is on track to recycle 2,500 tonnes of unwanted polyester this year, with a further 5,000 tonnes in its second year. It was developed with Pure Loop, a specialist in plastic recycling. Recycled polyester pellets produced by Project Re:claim from garment and textile waste Project Re:claim’s recycling plant established by Salvation Army Trading Company and Project Plan B Small business confidence rises as recession ends Overall confidence among owners of small businesses has risen into “lightly positive territory” after a year and a half of languishing “below zero”, according to new research. With Britain coming out of recession thanks to a rise in GDP in the first three months of this year, the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) found a corresponding upturn in sentiment about future prospects. Martin McTague, who is the national chair of the FSB, commented: “Our latest Small Business Index report for Q1 found that small firms’ overall confidence level rose into lightly positive territory after six straight quarters below zero, raising hopes that this year will be a brighter one for small business performance than the recent past.” Small businesses are more confident about future prospects. [Credit: Anna Nekrashevich/Pexels] New squeegee wash is ‘game-changer for screen print’ Easiway Systems has launched the Easisolv 401N Squeegee and Floodbar Wash, promoted as “a game-changer for screen printers”. Described as “revolutionary”, it features a “first-of-its-kind” formula that does not swell squeegee rubber, ensuring extended equipment life and consistent printing quality. Engineered specifically for automated cleaning equipment, 401N streamlines operations while effectively removing ink from suspension, simplifying cleaning and recirculation processes. Its versatile formula dissolves plastisol, solvent and UV inks, adhering to strict quality standards and restricted substances lists, including those of industry giants such as Nike, Gildan and Adidas. Easiway products are distributed in the UK through Screen Print World. King Charles III becomes patron of Printing Charity King Charles III has accepted the role of patron of the Printing Charity, taking over the role from his late mother. Every monarch since Queen Victoria has been patron of the charity, which dates back to 1827, and the King himself was charity president in 1977. The Printing Charity provides practical, emotional and financial support to individuals, business owners and their employees across the print industry. Neil Lovell, CEO of the Printing Charity, said: “His Majesty’s patronage is incredibly important to us, not just because of our long association with the royal family but as recognition of the work we do and services we offer for people who work or have worked in our sectors. “As we approach our 200th year in 2027, and we look to how best to develop our future services, it’s a real boost to receive this news and the continued recognition for our organisation.” The new Easisolv 401N Squeegee and Floodbar Wash Follow the links to the news stories online