Regions Southern Virginia

New network hopes to connect and expand polymer manufacturing in Southern Virginia

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A new network is forming to connect polymer manufacturers in Southern Virginia. Chris Horne, director of communications for the Institute of Advanced Learning and Research in Danville, said Tuesday that The Virginia Polymer Coalition will bring together technology and manufacturing interests to create a network for innovation and potential expansion of the polymer and plastics industry in the region.

The group plans to have an introductory lunch meeting at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 15 at the institute. The coalition will comprise a broad base of polymer makers and companies involved in sustainable conversion technologies, research, and business development. The meeting will include representatives from area firms and a presentation from Maverick Biofuels, a North Carolina company that converts industrial waste into biofuels and chemicals that can lead to plastics. In addition, the Southside Business Technology Center (SBTC), the Virginia Tech Office of Economic Development, and the Virginia Economic Development Partnership will participate.

A recent SBTC analysis commissioned by the Institute identified 33 target companies in the region involved in the making of plastics. The region includes six counties — Pittsylvania, Henry, Patrick, Halifax, Franklin, and Mecklenburg — and two cities, Danville and Martinsville.

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