Santa Ana, El Salvador – US-based foam recycling company Blumaka has signed a five-year lease on a 3,500 square metre facility in the American Park Free Zone, an industrial park in Santa Ana, El Salvador. Once the new facility is operational, Blumaka, which recycles waste foam to produce clean foam for the footwear industry, will be able to recycle in the Americas for the first time.
Currently California-based Blumaka processes foam waste in Asia. The El Salvador location will cut the company's shipping times from 30-40 days to one week. Blumaka pledges its El Salvador location will use local sources for recycled foam, and will adopt a ‘leave no trace’ policy – recycling its own leftover materials into new products.
Production services at the facility will include the ability to assemble sandals, flip flops, slippers, and slides; and manufacture shoe components including midsoles, insoles and cupsoles. The company will also produce other foam products including yoga mats, anti-fatigue mats and seating cushions.
Blumaka says its insoles are made from 85% recycled foam in a manufacturing process that uses 99.9% less water. The new Blumaka facility will produce foam products and components containing 70-95% recycled foam.
‘It’s been a longtime goal to bring foam and full footwear assembly closer to home and now we have done it so you no longer have to fly halfway around the world to get Blumaka expertise in developing midsole, outsole, and insole components,’ said Stuart Jenkins, CEO and co-founder of Blumaka. ‘Now the cleanest foam manufacturing in the world is on the same time zone and only four hours by plane from the key markets.’
The American Park Free Zone is 100% solar-powered and products manufactured at the facility will be Duty Free to the United States through the Dominican Republic-Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR).
American sneaker maker Psudo will be among the first footwear brands to partner with Blumaka at the new facility with a focus on shoe assembly. ‘Pseudo and Blumaka are like-minded with our vision for sustainable products,’ said Psudo CEO Michael Rich.