HOBUM News July 2023
Dear friends and business partners,
it’s summertime. Before (almost) everyone bids farewell for a well-deserved vacation, we would like to inform you about the latest activities and news at HOBUM.
The economic outlook for the remainder of the year is anything but summery. Despite the outlook, we are defying the circumstances and using the current situation to prepare for the future. We are investing in people, production, and products.
In recent weeks, we have welcomed new employees in production, analytics, and research and development. The upcoming extensive maintenance and repair work during our production shutdown are also of great importance. Various new product developments are underway in research and development. In this newsletter, we present a very interesting selected project. We have perfected sustainable bio-composite materials for lightweight car bodies in collaboration with our partners. As part of a research project, we have developed a bio-based resin system for fiber composites.
Promoting young talent is particularly close to our hearts. Through events such as Future Day, school internships, Experience Day, and other initiatives, we provide young people with the opportunity to gain insights into various areas of work at HOBUM.
We wish you and your families a relaxing and enjoyable vacation.
Dr. René Manski
Porsche Project: Bioconcept-Car
We are pleased to be a cooperation partner of the “Bioconcept-Car”! Our goal is to maximize the proportion of renewable raw materials in the Porsche door and other body parts – with bio-based plastics and paints.
Further information on the project:
Bio-composites and sustainable mobility: lightweight construction is the key technology for the mobility of the future. Lightweight construction is not feasible without composite materials. Since bio-composites are particularly sustainable and cost-effective with high technical performance, more and more car manufacturers are taking an interest in this material group.
Bio-composites in the automotive sector
More than a third of the bio-composites produced in Europe are used in the automotive sector. However, only a part of it is completely bio-based, as a rule the plastic matrix is still produced on the basis of petroleum-based polymers.
Biocomposites used in the automotive sector are almost exclusively natural fibre composites. They are mainly installed in the interior of cars.
Biocomposites as car bodies
Lighter than glass fibres, cheaper than carbon fibres: bio-composites are a sustainable alternative for lightweight vehicle bodies. Especially the low weight makes it attractive for the automotive industry, because it achieves low fuel consumption and thus improved CO₂ values for internal combustion engines. In electric motors, the light weight ensures greater ranges.
Biocomposites are not yet found in the bodies of road vehicles. But under the extreme stresses of motorsport, they have already proven their worth.
The Bioconcept Car
The world’s fastest test laboratory for sustainable mobility
For more than 15 years, the motorsport team Four Motors has consistently focused on sustainability in motorsport with its “Bioconcept Car” project, which uses biofuels and bio-materials based on renewable raw materials as well as recycled oils. Four Motors and its famous driver, the musician Smudo, are currently driving Porsche racing cars that actively support the sustainability approach, especially when it comes to lightweight construction.
- Video (Youtube in German): Das Bioconcept-Car im Rennen
- Video (Youtube in German): Das Bioconcept-Car
Text (in German): FNR – Biowerkstoffe: Bioconcept-Car
PFAS – What is it and why this abbreviation is becoming more and more common
The most important thing in advance: We do not use any PFAS to manufacture our products.
What are PFASs? Why are they so dangerous?
PFAS stands for “per- and polyfluorinated alkyl substances”. These are synthetic (non-natural) chemical compounds. In hydrocarbons, the hydrogen atoms are completely (perfluorinated) or partially (polyfluorinated) replaced by fluorine atoms.
The special and at the same time dangerous thing about PFAS is that they are very resistant and difficult to degrade. They are often referred to as “eternal chemicals” because they disappear only very slowly or accumulate further in the environment and living organisms as a result of further production and emission. They cannot be degraded quickly by water, light or bacteria.
The intake is via food, but especially via drinking water. Since January 2023, the maximum levels recommended since 2020 for certain PFASs in various foods and drinking water have been legally regulated throughout the EU. Studies have shown that they can have effects on organs such as the liver, the thyroid and the immune system. Some are suspected of causing cancer or affecting fertility.
What can PFAS do?
PFAS are water, grease and dirt repellent as well as chemically and thermally stable. Due to these properties, they are used in numerous consumer products such as cosmetics, coated pans, paper coatings – especially from the recycling process or in food packaging such as disposable tableware or burger paper – textiles (especially in functional clothing) or ski waxes. PFAS are also used for surface treatment of metals and plastics, in plant protection products or fire extinguishers.
Why are PFAS currently on everyone’s lips?
The reason for the frequency of public interest is the public consultation with ECHA, which will take place by September 2023, aimed at a general ban of PFAS chemicals.
Production stoppage from 24.07.2023 to 04.08.2023
During our production shutdown, important maintenance and repair work will be carried out to ensure the efficiency, safety, and quality of our production facilities. The following works are planned for calendar weeks 30 and 31:
Installation of a new wastewater treatment tank:
We are continuously committed to environmentally friendly processes, which is why we will be installing a new tank for wastewater treatment. This measure will improve the treatment and purification of our wastewater before it is directed to the respective disposal facilities.
Upgrading of steam boilers:
To ensure the reliability and efficiency of our steam boilers, we will be undertaking extensive upgrading measures. This will involve inspecting, maintaining, and repairing all relevant components as necessary to ensure that our steam boilers meet the highest quality standards and function optimally.
TÜV inspections of pressure vessels and facilities handling hazardous substances:
The safety of our employees and compliance with legal regulations are of utmost importance to us. During the production shutdown, we will conduct TÜV inspections on all relevant pressure vessels and facilities handling hazardous substances. This will ensure that our systems comply with legal requirements and function properly.
Periodic inspections of lifting equipment, hoses, loading stations, air compressors, fire doors, sprinkler systems, etc.:
To ensure the safety and efficiency of our operating equipment, recurring inspections of various components will be carried out during the shutdown. This includes lifting equipment, hoses, loading stations, air compressors, fire doors, the sprinkler system, and other relevant facilities. These inspections will help identify potential defects early on and take appropriate measures.
Cleaning of reactors and storage tanks:
Extensive cleaning work will be carried out on our reactors and storage tanks during the shutdown to ensure optimal product quality and operational efficiency. These cleaning measures aim to remove residues and improve the functionality of the equipment.
Repair and maintenance measures:
As part of the production shutdown, we will also conduct repair and maintenance measures on various facilities and machines to maintain their performance and durability.
For these reasons, there may be limited loading possibilities between July 24, 2023, and August 4, 2023. Please take this into account for your arrangements.
We understand that this production shutdown may have an impact on your orders and delivery times. Therefore, we would like to inform you in advance so that you can make appropriate preparations.
Our sales team is available to assist you in planning your orders and finding suitable solutions during this time. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us or book an online appointment. We are available at any time.
News from the HOBUM Crew
After 9 years of excellent collaboration, we bid farewell to our esteemed colleague Barbara Will, who is now embarking on her well-deserved retirement. As Inside Sales Manager, she has been a crucial point of contact for our customers and suppliers. We express our heartfelt gratitude to Barbara for her dedicated work and wish her nothing but the best for the future and this new chapter in her life.
In the past few months, we have had the pleasure of welcoming many new faces to HOBUM. Both our production and warehouse departments are delighted to have the support of enthusiastic new colleagues. Additionally, we have hired a student specializing in sustainable marketing. He is studying “People and Environment” and is eager to drive new projects forward.
Furthermore, we have expanded our team in application engineering, and exciting tasks await our new colleagues there as well. With these additions, we are well-equipped to continue providing you with first-class service and innovative solutions.
We look forward to collaborating with our new team members and are confident that they will make valuable contributions to our company.
As always, please do not hesitate to reach out to us with any questions or concerns. We appreciate your support and the trust you place in us.
Feel free to book a complimentary online appointment.
EcoVadis Silver Status!
We are delighted to once again receive the award for our sustainable practices this year! Our efforts have been recognized by EcoVadis with a Silver distinction.
EcoVadis is a renowned organization that provides comprehensive ratings on corporate social responsibility (CSR) to companies worldwide. Through their global cloud-based SaaS platform, they enable us to evaluate and improve our sustainability performance.
Collaborating with EcoVadis is a valuable partnership for us as we work alongside tens of thousands of companies on a shared platform. This platform offers us a universal scorecard, benchmarks, and tools for enhancing sustainability performance.
This year, we have made further progress and significantly improved our score compared to last year. This demonstrates that our efforts and investments in sustainable practices and initiatives are bearing fruit. We are on the right track and would like to express our gratitude to our customers and partners for supporting us in this endeavor.
Our goal is to reduce our ecological footprint, promote ethical business practices, and take social responsibility. Through our sustainable measures, we aim not only to protect the environment but also to have a positive impact on society and the communities in which we operate.
We take pride in having our efforts recognized by a reputable organization like EcoVadis. This accolade inspires us to continue finding innovative ways to achieve our sustainability goals and drive positive long-term change.
If you would like to learn more about EcoVadis, please visit their website: www.ecovadis.com/de. There, you will find detailed information about the platform and how it assists companies in implementing more sustainable business practices.
Promotion of Young Talent
We value the promotion of young talent and providing insights into the professional world. In this regard, we have carried out some exciting activities in recent weeks.
On Future Day, we had the privilege of welcoming 6 children to our company. They had the opportunity to learn about our production processes, work in our laboratory, and explore the history of our company. We hope they had an interesting and eventful day with us, and perhaps their interest in a career in our industry was sparked.
Furthermore, we participated in the Experience Day, an event that introduces young students to the working world. At our booth, curious visitors had the chance to learn more about our industry and career opportunities. Our laboratory manager and CEO had inspiring conversations with the participants, providing insights into our activities. We were thrilled by the interest and engagement shown by the students, and we hope that we could attract potential future colleagues for our company. Additionally, visitors had the opportunity to gain hands-on experience as we demonstrated the production of sunflower oil, which serves as a base for many of our products. We would like to express our sincere thanks to the NachwuchsCampus team for organizing this valuable event, allowing us to reach out to young individuals and showcase perspectives for their professional future.
Moreover, we have welcomed interns to our company in recent months. They had the opportunity to get a glimpse into various departments, including the laboratory, production, and administration. They also accompanied us to events and customer visits. Through such internships, we aim to provide young people with the chance to gain practical experience and deepen their interest in the chemical industry.
Supporting young talent and providing them with insights into our diverse fields of work is important to us. Nurturing the next generation is close to our hearts, and we will continue to work diligently in creating opportunities for young individuals to shape their professional futures.
Follow us on Instagram!
Get insights “Behind the Scenes” ! 🙂 Click here to go to our channel: @hobum_oleochemicals
Do you have any questions about our products?
We look forward to the exchange with you!
Eliane Aspiazu de la Vega
Would you like to find the next newsletter directly in your email inbox? Register here.