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Quinorgan receives sustainability accolade

Meeting a Spanish company which has been dedicated to producing materials and components for the global footwear industry for almost 70 years.

In 1933, Ramón Jové Gambús founded the ‘Dehisa’ chemical company in the Spanish city of Barcelona. This fledgling firm was later provided with the license and technology by a German company – Degussa – to produce adhesives, toe puffs and counters in Spain.

Then in 1956, the decision was made to form an independent company to specifically serve the footwear industry, and Quinorgan was born. Eight years later, the second generation of the family took up the reins, when Ramon Jové Mercader began leading the different companies and worked to consolidate them. Quinorgan registered its first export sales in 1966, and today 82 per cent of its production is shipped to over 70 countries around the world, making export the company’s main target market.

The third generation of family ownership began in 2006, when Luis Jové Pons became chief executive. Under his leadership, the different companies within the group were expanded and Quinorgan was made the flagship entity. Today, Quinorgan produces and distributes such items as toe puffs, counters, textile-based polyester insoles, reinforcements, lamination film, web and net, and a wide range of water-based, solvent-based and hot-melt adhesives. In line with its environmental goals, many of these are sustainable products which have been  developed to meet national and international market demands.

Part of a large international group, Quinorgan is still headquartered in Barcelona. The company has a number of subsidiaries in China, India, Mexico, Turkey and Vietnam, as well as an operation in Alicante, Spain.

New developments

After the inauguration of Quinorgan’s first extrusion product line in 2006, the company launched its ‘Diana’ extrusion material for counters and toe puffs. In 2021, a process was introduced to collect the scraps originating from manufacturing operations. This allowed Quinorgan to implement a circular economy in its production, minimising waste and increasing its range of sustainable products (including ‘Natura’, ‘Phoenix’ and ‘Diana Bio’) with new recycled and sustainable lines. All the extrusion ranges have GRS certification.

Sustainability issues

One of Quinorgan’s declared goals is the preservation of human and environmental values through environmentally-compatible and less aggressive economic development. For better control, the company has opened its own recycling plant which is used to treat the sheet waste generated from cutting toe puffs and counters.

The scrap being saved in this way is said to then become 15 to 22 per cent of the raw material utilised for new product. This reportedly achieves a closed-loop system of self-sufficiency by reusing material waste in new products. As a result of this circular economy process, the company has reduced its carbon footprint and aims to achieve ‘zero waste’ of materials. In addition, Quinorgan has ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 certification.

Quinorgan was a pioneer in the installation of solar panels within the chemical industry in the Catalonia region. This has allowed the company to gradually increase its ability to produce clean energy for internal use. All the water used by Quinorgan’s production lines machines is re-used. Much of it is filtered and utilised in new products, with the dirt removed being disposed of by the competent authorities. The rest of the water saved is used to clean the factories. Such efforts have not gone unnoticed, with the city of Barcelona officially congratulating Quinorgan for developing this project.

Publishing Data

This article was originally published on page 12 of the September 2023 issue of SATRA Bulletin.

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