Taking responsibility for the future generations is a central part of REHAU's DNA. Sustainability is therefore an integral component of the corporate strategy - also for RAUKANTEX.
RAUKANTEX edgebandings are one of the longest running programmes at REHAU and the backbone of our Furniture Solutions product world. But not only in production, but also among our employees, in the area of energy, purchasing and even packaging, much of the RAUKANTEX division revolves around the topic of sustainability. Our goal is to continuously increase the use of recycled materials and polymers on a non-fossil basis and to reduce CO2 emissions.
Wherever possible, we use sustainable packaging or packaging made from recycled materials. We work with partners who also follow the principle of "reduce - reuse - recycle". Because one thing is true: the best packaging is that which is not needed. We also emphasise this to our suppliers in our Supplier Code of Conduct. Together with our customers, we look for individual and suitable sustainable packaging solutions. For the REHAU Group, the share of packaging made from sustainable materials was already 65 % in 2019.
For example, Euro pallets are largely used in our plants, and the wooden boards used are already declared as sustainable. In addition, films and strapping made from up to 100% recycled materials are also used in some areas.
We reduce our use of energy and resources as much as possible and constantly invest in modern technologies and equipment. Gas, electricity and water consumption are controlled by modern monitoring in our plants. But that's not all: with the help of cross-plant monitoring through to detailed, route-specific observation using modern sensor technology, 17 % electricity (kWh/kg) savings (2018 compared to 2009) could be realised.
Our goal: we want to exploit all potential savings and achieve CO2 neutrality. In our plants, we pay attention to compliance with the latest, international standards. Our plants in Visbek, Rehau and Tortosa, for example, are certified according to ISO 50001, and the entire European edgeband production already uses 100% climate-neutral electricity.
In addition to continuously increasing the proportion of recycled return material and post-industrial recyclates in our production areas, we aim to maximise the elimination of harmful substances in our products. For example, we do not use any pigments containing lead and have largely no chlorine-containing compounds in adhesion promoters and printing inks.
Wherever possible, we process and recycle production waste (ISO 14001-certified environmental management system). High sustainability standards apply to us and our suppliers (Supplier Code of Conduct). We buy certified raw materials, both at product and packaging level.
We move people and our employees move REHAU: this has been a firm principle for decades. We therefore establish an appreciative working environment free of low-wage production, exploitation and child labour at all our sites and for all our employees (Supplier Code of Conduct). Wherever possible, we take personal life situations into account.
We ensure attractive remuneration at all locations and promote diversity and cultural diversity.
And we also set a good example in the area of inclusion and participate, for example, in regional and national campaigns on the prospects and opportunities for people with disabilities in their immediate working environment.
Together with our purchasing company Meraxis, we are constantly working to find and secure stable and permanent sources of supply. In this way, we want to keep expanding the proportion of our product lines with a high recycled content. The end result is lightweight construction components with components made from recycled.
Sustainable and 100% perfect in design - no contradiction with REHAU
With RAUKANTEX eco we have developed an edgeband that consists of 50% post-industrial recyclates and is in no way inferior to a classic PP edgeband in terms of design, quality and processing.
This second sustainable RAUKANTEX product line is based 100% on renewable raw materials, which do not require any additional crude oil. This makes it an absolute innovation.
This means: If this edgeband is processed instead of a conventional polypropylene edgeband, ISCC PLUS certification ensures that non-fossil raw materials are used in PP production instead of crude oil. These are "renewable feedstock" - specifically waste products from other industries - which at the same time ensures that no valuable cultivation areas are occupied, e.g. by crops grown specifically for plastic production.
The sustainable edgeband made of polypropylene (PP), which is currently undergoing the ISCC PLUS certification process, can be processed like today's "standard PP edgeband" and has the same qualitative properties. And it matches the surface just as perfectly as our existing RAUKANTEX edgebands. Here too, there are almost no limits to the areas of application.
Properties of RAUKANTEX eco & evo:
- Available as a classic adhesive edgeband or with a polymeric functional layer for laser production
- Available for standard lacquers, noble matt lacquers and mirror gloss
- Decor lines: RAUKANTEX color, RAUKANTEX decor, RAUKANTEX designo
- Can be ordered for all embossings
- Easy processing without changing machine parameters
- High quality design
- Long durability
- 100 % colour and decor fidelity
- Range of dimensions: 0.4 mm to 3.0 mm / 16 mm to 104 mm
Our RAUKANTEX pro range is based on the ecologically more compatible polymer polypropylene and a 100% adhesive-free functional layer. This has already enabled us to save large quantities of adhesive over the years.
Invisible and yet indispensable
RAUKANTEX basic edge
Today, mainly chipboard and MDF boards are used in furniture construction. These consume a high amount of resources (e.g. wood or transport). The environmentally friendly alternative is lightweight construction. Here, boards with honeycomb cores are used, which are significantly lighter and conserve resources. The RAUKANTEX basis edge is a functional edge which has been specially designed for the production of such lightweight applications.
The functional edge is inserted into the panel below the actual decorative edge and stabilises the thin cover layers of the honeycomb panels in the radius area. RAUKANTEX basic edge is manufactured from 100 % production waste, so-called recyclates.
From old to new - recycling of production waste
In the manufacturing process of our customers, waste is produced by milling and trimming the edges. But this does not end up in the waste. The chips and cut-off pieces of edgeband are extracted, processed and returned to us as part of a pilot project. New RAUKANTEX basic edge edgebands, for example, are then produced in our factories.
“Furniture fronts for the next generation“
Interview with Johan Engström, Business Development Manager, Spaljisten
The company Spaljisten manufactures refined fronts for bedroom, kitchen and living room furniture. With their sustainable kitchen fronts, the Swedes are a driving force in their markets and send a clear message in favour of the resource-saving production. The “RAUKANTEX eco“ edgeband by REHAU, made of 50 percent post-industrial recycled materials, is an integral part of this project, explains Business Development Manager Johan Engström during an interview with HK magazine.