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Helping the Environment, One Towel at a Time


Hemlock and Executive Mats: Leaders in Innovation & the Circular Economy

In a circular economy there is no product called “waste”; there is only materials flow. The Circular Economy encompasses internal and external systems such that a by-product of a process is another company’s processes feedstock. At Hemlock, we are continually looking for ways to demonstrate our leadership in innovation and the Circular Economy. For this reason, we are proud to participate in Executive Mat’s Green Thumb Initative since 2009.

For the past decade, Executive Mat picks-up our used solvent and soiled print towels for cleaning and brings them back to their facility, where they are spun at high speeds to remove all the liquids. These liquids are sent to a micro-refinery where they are processed in a vacuum distillation system to recover usable litres of solvent. These recovered solvents are returned into the parts wash and print wash industries. Additionally, our print towels recover 50% of hydrocarbons for fuel that Executive Mat uses to heat and power their facility and 45% of wastewater to be used in their pre-wash system. The towels are then cleaned using recycled water and then the water is cleaned through a thorough filtration system and used again. Once cleaned, the towels are sent back to Hemlock to be used. When the towels are worn out, they are shredded and used to heat Executive Mat’s facility.  

In 2018, we recovered over 85,000 usable litres of hydrocarbons and solvent that can be used in Executive Mat’s facility and in the parts wash and print wash industries.

Moving forward, we hope to establish more partnerships and initiatives that support the Circular Economy.