Texon, competitiveness connected with sustainable development – spotted at Lineapelle

When a company strives to reduce its environmental impact, it is naturally good for the planet but this type of initiative does not always turn into a profitable investment for companies because, as happened to Texon, bureaucratic quibbles and poor communication between interlocutors can create a real economic disaster. Dr. Roberto Rosettani, Managing Director of the Italian division, tells us about the incident; despite everything, he remains optimistic. For our part, we are sure that socially responsible companies will emerge stronger from the crisis because whoever involve stakeholders in monitoring the effects induced by their work are the first to benefit from their commitment. Social and environmental responsibility frees companies from the shackles of short-term vision.
Mr. Rosettani, what was the balance of the latest edition of Lineapelle?
“We were pleasantly surprised by the turnout. We hope but did not expect it to be so massive. We have seen customers who are very happy to be in contact with us again physically: it has been a very positive three days. Obviously, we talked about many problems. Speaking face to face with customers was really good, even if the moment is complicated because we are massively affected by the cost increases on raw materials that occurred in the second half of 2021. Now, we are hit by the skyrocketing of energy costs, too: for us, especially for Texon’s flagship, namely the insoles cellulosic material, is devastating, because we are an energy-intensive company, so this increase has a huge direct impact on production costs. We are very worried about that.”
Have you adopted any particular strategies to face the problem and reduce costs?
“In one plant, we’ve been able to replace the energy source with a cheaper alternative source. Unfortunately, this was not possible in the Italian plant, where we had major problems due to bureaucratic quibbles: about 10 years ago, we invested millions of euros to implement the plant, but due to unfounded accusations, we were forced to dismantle everything. Obviously, we had made such an investment not foreseeing today’s storm, but well aware that an energy system powered by alternative sources was a good thing. Instead, we have returned to the starting point, being significantly economically damaged and thus even more concerned about the current situation. Considering what is happening, the picture becomes even more bleak.”
What did you present at the fair?
“Texon presented a cellulosic material with biodegradable features. This is not of little importance in our sector, because the latexes used in the production of cellulosic materials are obviously of petroleum derivation. Therefore, a plant- origin latex that can guarantee biodegradability is a very important step. We also re-launched ProWeave mission: a fabric suitable for both footwear and leather goods, customizable according to the client’s ideas featuring a new concept of fabric application, especially of jacquard fabric. This is an interesting project that we are carrying out with different brands at an international level, so we are also satisfied the visits of the customers we had during the show days.”
What kind of feedback did you have on these two innovations?
“Definitely positive. It was something we’d been working on for some time. Moreover, the market is moving towards increasingly eco-sustainable products and biodegradability is part of this concept. We can say we had a good timing in presenting such projects.”
What about your future projects?
“The idea is to find a biodegradable solution also in the range of cellulosic materials for footwear, thus including the entire range that is produced both in Italy and in Germany. Texon’s goal, both as an Italian subsidiary and as a Group, is to proceed with rapid steps towards zero waste by 2025. We are therefore taking very strong and very specific actions to reduce energy and water consumption, to optimize raw materials, reuse and recycle all processing waste in all production units. We are making very important progress. Every year, the Group releases a sustainability report, we are waiting for it. We are quite optimistic about the future.”