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Lifocolor Farben celebrates 35th anniversary

This year, the Lifocolor Group looks back on 35 years of company history: On 4 February 1988, the masterbatch manufacturer was founded in Lichtenfels/Bavaria.


This year, the Lifocolor Group looks back on 35 years of company history: On 4 February 1988, the masterbatch manufacturer was founded in Lichtenfels/Bavaria. Today, Lifocolor is one of the leading specialists for colouring, stabilising and functionalising plastics in Europe - with around 300 employees in four countries and an annual production capacity of up to 10,000 tonnes. The next big goal: reducing the company's own greenhouse gas emissions by 90 percent until 2050.

Lifocolor emerged 35 years ago as an independent production company for masterbatches for polyolefins, styrenics and engineering plastics from the company Horst Müller Kunststoffe. In the same year, Gustav Grolman took over the company with a staff of 15 members. The following decades were characterised by continuous growth and investments. Already in the 90s, the headquarters in Lichtenfels was expanded several times. In 1993, the subsidiary in the Czech Republic was founded, and in 1997, an existing trade cooperation led into today's Polish site. The acquisition of a compounding and recycling company marked the start of sales activities in France in 1998. In 2012, Lifocolor took over the business and production facility of MicroColor Masterbatch GmbH in Straufhain-Adelhausen, Thuringia, with which Lifocolor Farben GmbH und Co KG in Germany now counts around 200 employees.

A history marked by investment and progress

In the past decade alone, the masterbatch supplier has invested a mid-double-digit million amount in the expansion and sustainable modernisation of all sites. After successively expanding its European plants between 2012 and 2018, Lifocolor completed new construction and renovation work on the now 2,800 m² modern KfW 55 warehouse and logistics building in Straufhain-Adelhausen in 2020. In 2021, the company inaugurated the newly built KfW 55 production plant at its headquarters in Lichtenfels. The new plants in Germany and France have been equipped with systems for regenerative energy generation such as photovoltaics and heat pumps.

Dr Martin Fabian, who has been managing Lifocolor's business for more than 20 years, states: "The production sites in Lichtenfels and Straufhain are important success factors for our group. We employ valuable and long-standing employees there who have advanced our company with their commitment and know-how. At our German locations, we create the new developments as well as the high production and quality standards for our products. Our foreign subsidiaries implement them ideally with a feel for and knowledge of local market needs, so that today we supply a large number of internationally active plastics processors and renowned brand companies".

Know-how in many industries and for the circular economy

Lifocolor now produces masterbatches, additives and compounds for almost all industries and applications. The focus is on the segments of general and cosmetic packaging, consumer goods for household, garden, sports, leisure or toy sectors, as well as industrial applications with technically high material requirements. In recent years, Lifocolor has primarily expanded its expertise in sustainable solutions for the circular economy of plastics: "With our eternity colours, we develop masterbatches that ideally support plastics before, during and after the use phase. We are guided by the attitude of using only harmless, recyclable colourants in our research and development, through which plastics can remain colourful and sustainable in the future," explains Dr Martin Fabian.

Net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050

Lifocolor takes the concept of sustainability into account not only in its product development, but along the entire supply chain. As part of the Grolman Group, Lifocolor has committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 90 percent until 2050. To this end, an official progress framework has been defined on the basis of 2019, which is approved and verified by the recognised Science Based Target Initiative (SBTi). "With the science-based targets formulated there, we are making our contribution to taking responsibility and to limiting global warming as well as counteracting climate change. We are proud to be one of the first medium-sized companies in our industry to commit so extensively to the validated and consistent SBTi framework. This sets standards and a clear statement of the extent to which we understand sustainable thinking and action. In this way, our masterbatches will remain environmentally conscious products in every respect."

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