New surgical glove plant in Kulim with sustainability at its core

Mölnlycke’s new plant in Kulim, a RM233 million state-of-the-art factory to meet future demand for high-quality surgical gloves, is determined to take the lead and set the direction for that shift in the industry. The factory that in terms of sustainability will lead the way for a new generation of Mölnlycke factories. 

The new Kulim factory is partnering with ENGIE for sustainable energy solutions and Veolia Water Technologies for water and wastewater treatment solutions to ensure best-in-class energy and water management, enabling water recovery and reuse. 

Veolia will be assisting in improving the plant’s water and wastewater management, effectively recycling water and further improving the discharge quality. With Veolia’s digitalised wastewater system, water reclaim and recycling rate is expected to be reduced to 60%.

ENGIE will be supplying the plant with its energy source by installing solar panels to power the manufacturing production and operations. It will support Mölnlycke’s production operations by providing sustainable energy solutions to the new Kulim plant under a long-term power-purchase agreement spanning over 15 years.

“From a commercial perspective, we see an increased demand for high-quality and sustainable surgical gloves across the glove. This is why we are engaged with experts in the fields of energy management and waste water management. This investment is also to support Malaysia’s national agenda to be a carbon neutral nation by 2050 into reality by running its operations in a less resource intensive way,’’ said Zlatko Rihter, CEO of Mölnlycke.

Mölnlycke has had an increasing presence in Kedah since 1990, starting with the first factory in Kulim, Kuala Ketil in Baling district and now with the new launch at the Hi-Tech Park in Kulim.

For Mölnlycke, the new plant is a significant milestone as it is part of the company’s transformative journey towards becoming a global leader in sustainable healthcare.

Olivier Estienne, country director of Malaysia for Veolia Water Technologies, said: “Veolia is firmly committed to championing ecological transformation. We are excited to partner with companies like Mölnlycke, who seek to establish sustainable practices and integrate a green mindset into their business. Our team is proud to be part of Mölnlycke’s expansion plans in Malaysia and we look forward to more avenues to support their endeavour for greater sustainability and improved performance.”

He added that in addition, Mölnlycke can also depend on Veolia’s proven solutions to ensure compliance with the local wastewater discharge standards, and even achieve greater water reuse. With Veolia’s proprietary technologies — the AnoxKaldnes Moving Bed Biofilm Reactor, Idraflot Dissolved Air Flotation, and Multiflo clarifier— Mölnlycke is on track to reclaiming and reusing up to 60% of their wastewater within a relatively small footprint. 

The project also includes Veolia’s full services bundle that encompasses 24/7 maintenance, Hubgrade digital monitoring services, and a tailored Hydrex chemical conditioning program. 

These services, he added, come together to allow Mölnlycke to further optimize energy and water management at the new plant.