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Technical Absorbents
Technical Absorbents

4th June 2010, Exeter, Ontario

Business booms for Canadian knitter after BP oil spill

Canadian warp and circular knitter Syfilco Ltd has reported its business is booming following the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Syfilco, a family business founded in the 1970s manufactures knitted polyester fabric sleeves and polyethylene netting sleeves that are filled with absorbent materials to create booms used to contain the spill in the Gulf.

According to local newspaper reports, production of sleeves at Syfilco has recently doubled due to the spill, causing the company to buy new equipment and dust off older equipment that had been mothballed.

Syfilco’s vice president Andy de Boer told the Exeter Times-Advocate newspaper reporters that the company had the capability to produce 160 miles of boom per week but had recently increased that to 215 miles per week. De Boer also said that as the new machinery comes on line, it might be as high as 300 miles per week.

Demand is expected to last nine months due to the timeline given for the clean-up in the Gulf and there will also be a need to replenish emergency reserves depleted due to the spill, according to De Boer. Syfilco has been producing boom sleeves since the Exxon Valdez oil spill in 1989 and also manufactures agricultural drainage filters, hay bale netting and shade netting.

The company runs a plant of small diameter circular knitting machines for the inner fabric sleeves of the casings and a plant of double needle bar raschel machines for the split film outer net sleeves. Fabric sleeves are made from polyester for general applications or polypropylene for absorption of aggressive liquids.

The company specializes in manufacturing bulk fabrics for producers or distributors who incorporate the fabrics into finished products or end-use markets. Syfilco Ltd was founded by Sybren de Boer 1979, who converted a former grass seed mill into a knitting mill.



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