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Nüwa's Chinese textile plant follows bluesign principles
Dec '09
Honmyue Enterprise Co Ltd of Taiwan and its American subsidiary, Nüwa Textiles, are pleased to announce that their facilities in Jiaxing, Zhejiang, China and Chuang-Hua, Taiwan have earned certification by bluesign technologies ag, St. Gallen, Switzerland in recognition of the company's environmental responsibility effective January 1, 2010.

Honmyue holds the distinction of being the first plant designed and built following bluesign principles for its plant in Jiaxing, Zhejiang, China. The company closely worked with bluesign and Nüwa Textiles to insure the new factory fulfilled the five pillars of the certifying agency: resource productivity, consumer safety, air emission, water emission, and occupational health and safety.

“Our goal is to reduce water, energy, and chemical use while producing the highest quality textiles,” said Nüwa Textiles President Michael Shih, “At the same time we must always be aware of the safety of our employees.”

The infrastructure of both facilities is designed to recycle all of the water used in the manufacturing process. The Jiaxing plant recycles 100% of the water used in weaving compared to the earlier design in Taiwan that reaches 80%. The difference is testament to a plumbing design that allows for more non-technical reuse of the water.

During the dyeing of material the water is put through a rigorous 16-stage treatment that begins with a unique system that determines the pollution level of the water input and diverts it into one of two independent systems. One is for seriously polluted water and the other for less severely contaminated water. This allows for better usage monitoring and reduces unnecessary chemicals used to neutralize the more polluted water.

Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) is a common parameter used to measure the quality of water. Many governments use COD allowance in their regulations to determine if the wastewater is clean enough to return to the environment. For example in Switzerland, a maximum COD of 200~1000 mg/L is required, whereas Jiaxing has a requirement of 500 mg/L. bluesign with its stricter standards sets the bar at 160 mg/L. The Honmyue plant's output tests at 50 mg/L, one-tenth of the municipal requirement and far below bluesign's.

Designing the plant according to bluesign philosophy and standards helps lower energy usage by making sure all pipes, tanks, and dying machines are heavily insulated. Since consistent high temperature is critical to quality dyeing, proper insulation ensures not only an efficient use of energy but also a dependable product result.

The bluesign standard carries the longest Restricted Substances List (RSL) in textile manufacturing. The company feels that careful monitoring of chemical inputs results in finished products that are safer for both the labor force manufacturing them and the consumer.

Honmyue Enterprises is a public corporation listed on the Taiwan Stock Exchange. The company began in 1970 and is one of the largest manufacturers for woven fabrics. Honmyue's largest facility in the company is a 1,000-weaving loom plant near Taichung, Taiwan. The newest is a completely vertical plant near Jiaxing, China. It includes approximately 250 weaving looms and a dyeing and finishing facility. Honmyue produces over 20 million yards a month.

Nüwa Textiles

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