Kickstart: Really great | Plastics News

Each year, when employees of Plastics News visit the Processor of the Year finalists, they come back filled with stories and admiration for what these companies do.

Unfortunately, there can only be one POY winner. (With the exception of 2002, when two companies, Tech Group Inc. and Precise Technology Inc., tied for the prize.) Fortunately, PN The Excellence Awards honor those who excel in customer service, employee relations, technology and community service.

Here’s a quick primer for winners in 2021:

• Comar LLC has added plants and employees over the past two years during a period of record growth, creating a “labour turnover…unlike I have ever experienced”, said CEO Mike Ruggieri. To help new employees adjust to the business, it created “Comar University” to train new workers and help existing employees advance.

• PTI Engineered Plastics of Macomb, Michigan, manufactured and donated thousands of pieces of personal protective equipment early in the pandemic. The company also worked with a fourth-grade student on the Little Inventors project, developing a prototype for the “Ocean Snake of Doom,” a system capable of collecting marine litter.

• Proto Labs Inc., more commonly known as Protolabs, rewrites the idea of ​​tooling and prototyping. “Speed ​​of execution is what our customers really appreciate,” said Greg Wesling, director of injection molding manufacturing operations. “They like the fact that they can have an idea, let’s say Wednesday…and we can have parts in our hands by Friday or Monday of next week.”

• Teel Plastics LLC was known for its precision extrusion for the medical industry, but when COVID-19 hit it quickly expanded production into both extrusion and injection molding to make test swabs . It has now made over 2 billion swabs.