A small UK automotive parts manufacturer has made sustainability a key driver within the business by increasing the use of recycled materials and natural fibres on the company’s production line.

Interflex, which has been making NVH parts and sealing products for the automotive industry for 30 years, has introduced new ranges of recycled and recyclable materials to create a more sustainable supply chain and to meet the aim of reducing its carbon footprint.

Although best known for working in the automotive industry, the new materials Ocean and Mulchii have very diverse uses. Ocean is a polyester fibre used in the manufacture of acoustic absorbers designed to reduce noise and vibration in vehicles.

Mulchii is a non-auto material made from hemp or jute and is used to make mulch mats which help create optimal growth conditions for newly planted trees.

Interflex MD Jim Griffin said: ”We have long focused on the cost-effective use of materials to meet cost and performance demands as well as reducing weight in vehicles to make them more economical. So, it seemed like a natural extension to develop and use recycled materials in our products. We aim to be one of the most eco-conscious manufacturers in the automotive sector, as well as expanding the use of these products into other areas.”

Ocean is made from a minimum of 75% recycled polyester and can be recycled at the end of its lifespan. Lightweight and mouldable, it can help reduce shape complexity which cuts tooling costs and enables better utilisation of materials. Ocean is also heat sealable, as well as water and oil resistant and is already improving levels of recyclability at the end of a vehicle’s life.