FRX Innovations and Sichuan EM Technology Co., Ltd Jointly Develop Flame Retardant Upholstery Fabrics for The UK Furniture Market with Outstanding Touch and Feel
Boston, MA | October 03, 2022 07:30 AM Eastern Daylight Time
FRX Innovations Inc. (TSXV:FRXI) (FRA:W2A), a leader in eco-friendly flame-retardant (“FR”) solutions, has announced a collaboration with Sichuan EM Technology Co., Ltd (“Sichuan”), to introduce world’s first halogen free inherent flame-retardant upholstery fabric solution capable of meeting the stringent British Fire Standard BS 5852; part 1 for furniture, while providing outstanding touch and feel, all in a solution that is environmentally sustainable and permanent. The introduction of this new fabric technology, Glentham® anti-dripping FR Polyester fiber and yarn solution, comes on the heels of new regulations banning the content of Persistent Organic Pollutants like halogenated flame retardants, in recycled furniture sold in the UK.
According to the regulations in the United Kingdom, upholstered furniture needs to be fire retardant to ignition by a cigarette and by a small flame like a match, and must meet British Standard BS 5852; part1, a very stringent fire test. Today, most upholstery fabrics are treated with halogen contained flame retardant chemicals to meet this standard. While these solutions do reduce the risk of fire, toxicity concerns due to the flame-retardant system remains. Moreover, as of January 1, 2023, persistent organic pollutants like halogenated flame retardants will be required to be disposed of like chemical waste which means that furniture treated with these persistent organic chemicals will need to be incinerated and will no longer be allowed to be land filled.
Sichuan has launched a series of fabrics, based on Nofia® Polyphosphonate halogen-free flame retardants, which meet the British Standard while at the same time offer permanence of FR performance after numerous wash cycles. Sichuan’s Glentham® anti-dripping FR Polyester fiber and yarn solution, based on modified polyester fibers with a high Phosphorous content (22,000 ppm), show exceptionally high resistance against ignition in both surface and edge ignition. At the same time, they provide outstanding textile properties such as hand and feel, breathability and abrasion resistance. Nofia Flame Retardants from FRX is the only halogen-free FR technology capable of such high loading in Polyester fabrics. Other halogen-free technologies are limited to about 6500ppm of phosphorus and thus could not meet the UK’s stringent fire safety standards.
The fabrics come in blends with wool, cotton or viscose and have the natural feel of the organic fibers, the strength of the polyester and breathability needed for cozy and comfortable seating. With comfort, safety, and sustainability these fabrics will set a new performance bar not previously possible.
This development opens new opportunities for flame retardant fabrics without the use of halogenated flame retardants which are already banned in the EU and will also come under regulatory pressure within the short term in the UK as well. Based on publicly available information, this joint development gives access to roughly 20 million square meters per year (400 g per square meter) of upholstery fabrics in the UK alone and an estimated market potential of around $500 million.
“The UK government’s strict Furniture Fire Safety regulations coupled with new regulations limiting disposal of furniture treated with persistent organic pollutants has enabled new innovative materials to come onto the market, which provides the market with a no compromise fabric that both fire safe and human health safe”. Said by Marc Lebel, CEO of FRX. “This development could not have been possible if not for our Nofia Flame Retardant technology. Consumers can enjoy the comfort and safety of the modern furniture solutions without compromise.”
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About FRX Innovations
FRX Innovations is a global manufacturing company, producing a family of environmentally sustainable flame-retardant products that serve several large markets spanning electronics, automotive, electric vehicles (EV) and medical devices. FRX is led by a team of highly experienced business and technical professionals and is positioned to be a leader in the rapidly growing flame-retardant plastics and additives market.Nofia® is a registered trademark of FRX. Nofia® products are manufactured at its manufacturing facility on the Port of Antwerp in Belgium, one of the world's largest chemical producing clusters. Nofia Polyphosphonates are produced using sustainable green chemistry principles such as a solvent-free production process, no waste by-products, and near 100% atom efficiency. FRX's portfolio includes an extensive patent estate. FRX has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the EPA's Environmental Merit Award, the Belgium Business Award for the Environment, and the Flanders Investment of the Year Award. FRX has also been recognized six times on the Global Cleantech 100 list.
About Sichuan EM Technology Co., Ltd.
Sichuan EM Technology Co., Ltd. (EMT) is a professional global material manufacturer, committed to introducing safe and eco-friendly material solutions to create a better quality of life for society. EMT, established in 1966 and headquartered in Mianyang, Sichuan, China, has comprehensive R&D and manufacturing capability, owns 18 subsidiaries. Producing electrical & electronic films, electrical insulation materials, composite materials, flame retardant materials and special resins. We provide products and services to many industries. EMT has established long-term and stable partnerships, cooperating with partners in many countries and regions around the world whilst also providing strong relationships in manufacturing services to Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs). The Functional Material Division of EMT focuses on manufacturing FR polyester & special grades.
CAUTIONARY STATEMENTS REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION
This press release contains "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation. Generally, forward-looking information can be identified by the use of forward looking terminology such as "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "expected", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts", "intends", "anticipates" or "does not anticipate", or "believes", or variations of such words and phrases or state that certain acts, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might" or "will be taken", "occur" or "be achieved". Forward-looking information in this press release may include, without limitation, statements with respect to the safety and/or efficacy of Nofia® flame retardants, the size of the potential market opportunity, the expected shift by OEMs that would benefit the Company, and that this product would not be possible without the use of Nofia®. Forward-looking information is subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements of the Company, as the case may be, to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking information. Although the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking information, there may be other factors that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that such information will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. The Company does not undertake to update any forward-looking information, except in accordance with applicable securities laws.