Press Release: Bringing modernized, climate friendly recycling technology to the United States, the world’s largest tire recycling company officially opened their new state-of-the-art tire recycling facility inHouston, Texas. 

Genan, a global leader in the extraction and production of rubber granulate (crumb rubber), rubber powder and steel from scrap tires, currently operates the world’s four largest tire-processing plants in Germany and Denmark.  TheHouston facility will employ approximately 60 workers and was constructed over the last two years with an investment of $140 million.  The new plant has the capacity to recycle approximately 10 million passenger car tire equivalents a year, about a third of all the used tires in Texas.  

Today’s grand opening of Genan’s Houston facility, now the largest of its kind in the world, marks the first manufacturing location launched by the company in the United States and will become the US headquarters for their expansion plans in an effort to capture 10% of the American recycled tire market.  The company’s strategic expansion plans include a network of 4 new plants across the US in the coming years.   

Lars Raahauge, Genan’s Director of Business Development, said, “We are currently performing due diligence on a number of states across the country.  Exact locations will depend on the long-term reliability of available tire supplies as well as a business setting, community support, and a legislative & regulatory approach that is compatible with Genan’s environmentally and climate friendly tire recycling concept.”

Today, a large percentage of the world’s scrap tires are incinerated in cement kilns for tire derived fuel, disposed of in landfills or utilized in civil engineering filling operations.  This unfortunate end use of a valuable resource prohibits the beneficial recovery for the replacement of new virgin material.  Numerous scientific studies and life cycle assessments have demonstrated that the Genan recycling process, compared to incineration for tire derived fuel and civil engineering filling operations, dramatically reduces greenhouse gas emissions, acidification and fossil fuel demand. The company has a motto of “Don’t dump or burn a valuable resource!” to highlight the process Genan utilizes compared to other disposal methods for scrap tires. 

Genan’s highly advanced recycling technology is fully automated and has undergone continuous development since inception in 1990.  Scrap tires are separated into their basic components: rubber powder and granulate, steel and textile. The end products are uniform, clean and well suited for high quality substitution applications, such as asphalt and bitumen modifications to make roads stronger and longer lasting. 

Cheryl Mergo, Sustainable Development Program Manager for the Houston-Galveston Area Council, welcomed the news and said, “Genan’s Houston facility is an exciting addition to the US market and represents tremendous progress in environmental stewardship and recycling technology.”

Genan’s products are also used for synthetic turf installations, playgrounds and recreational facilities, sports tracks and grounds, asphalt roads, building products, flooring, injection molded products, industrial applications, noise insulation and many other purposes and applications.  Genan products have been utilized at the last 2 NFL Super Bowls and are currently in use across the country at a number of professional and college football facilities. 

Within 24 months, the Genan Houston plant will be expanded to produce a line of very fine cryogenic rubber powder and a technologically unique devulcanization line for the production of rubber, which will be able to substitute virgin rubber compounds.