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Duravit builds world's first climate-neutral ceramics plant in Canada

15 of July '23

Manufacturer of designer bathrooms becomes pioneer of sustainable sanitary industry

Duravit AG is taking a milestone toward a sustainable future: the world's first climate-neutral ceramics plant is being built in Matane, Québec, Canada. The new plant in Canadawill create 240 new jobs, with production scheduled to begin in early 2025. Ceramic sanitary ware, such as toilets and sinks, will in future be produced using only renewable energy. In the firing process, Duravit will use the world's first electric roller kiln powered by hydropower. The use of this innovative technology will save around 11,000 tons ofCO2 per year compared to a conventional ceramics factory. This makes Duravit a pioneer in the industry.

Extensive political support encourages implementation

The plant, which will be commissioned in 2025, will be Duravit AG's first production facility in North America. The company aims to supply the North American market while eliminating greenhouse gas emissions. With hydropower and proximity to raw materials, the Matane plant will become the world's first carbon-neutral sanitary ceramics plant. To implement the project, the Canadian government is providing the company with a repayable contribution of $19 million (€13 million) under the CED Regional Economic Growth through Innovation (REGI) program. For its part, the Quebec government is providing an $11 million (€7.5 million) loan through the ESSOR program, administered by Investissement Québec as its agent.

Ceremonia wmurowania kamienia węgielnego w Matane

Foundation stone laying ceremony in Matane
From left: Christian Gilles, Kristina Michaud, Pascale St-Onge, François-Philippe Champagne,
Hubert Bolduc, Pascal Bérubé, Eddy Métivier, Stephan Tahy, Thomas Stammel

© Duravit AG

The Canadian government's investment in this project will not only bring a world-renowned company to Quebec, but also a company that has distinguished itself by its ability to innovate for more than 200 years. By focusing on Quebec and its hydroelectricity as a source of clean, renewable energy, it shows that economic growth and the fight against climate change can go hand in hand. By supporting Duravit Canada, our government is helping the company make the transition into the technology of the future and make winning choices for the planet," Pascale St-Onge, Minister of Sport and Minister responsible for Economic Development Canada's Quebec regions.
Canada will be the first country in the world to produce carbon-neutral ceramics! Thanks to our indigenous raw materials, renewable energy and proximity to the market, German company Duravit has chosen Matane for its first factory in North America. This investment is not only in line with our economic vision of a greener future, but will also create new jobs in the region, while strengthening Canada's position and reputation as a green supplier -
François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry.

Innovative response to climate change

In designing and preparing the new production facility, Duravit worked closely with Italian ceramics machinery and equipment manufacturer SACMI as a strategic partner. Significant synergies were achieved through joint development work. Previously, electric furnace technology was useless for the sanitary ceramics sector. Working closely with long-time partner SACMI, a new type of kiln has been developed to meet these requirements.

Regional development is very important to our government, and the emergence of a company like Duravit in Quebec is a great example of this. The aid announced today will not only create quality jobs, but will also boost economic development on the peninsula. Economic success in Matane means economic success throughout the Gaspésie region, and our government is proud to contribute to that," Diane Lebouthillier, Member of Parliament for Gaspésie-Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine and Minister of National Revenue.
Duravit is a world leader in its field. It is therefore excellent news that the company is choosing Quebec as the location of its first carbon-neutral factory in the world and its first manufacturing facility in North America. This is a major project that meets our goals of replacing imports and increasing efficiency through process automation," Christopher Skeete, Minister of the Economy, Minister in charge of anti-racism and Minister in charge of the Laval region.

Ceremonia wmurowania kamienia węgielnego w Matane, wizualizacja fabryki

Foundation stone laying ceremony in Matane, visualization of the factory

© Duravit AG

Project proves feasibility ofCO2-neutral production

The use of renewable energy sources, such as hydropower, will reduceCO2 emissions in production to zero: Duravit is therefore the first ceramics manufacturer to rely on an electric firing process, together with market leader SACMI, to enable production in a completely climate-neutral manner. The manufacturer of designer bathrooms shows that under the right conditions,CO2-neutral production is already possible, even in energy-intensive industries.

The Bas-Saint-Laurent region is a natural entry point for the Americas. With its deep-water port, the town of Matane is strategically positioned, which has given it a competitive advantage in implementing this promising project for the future of the region and Quebec as a whole - Maïté Blanchette Vézina, Minister of Natural Resources and Forests and Minister responsible for the Bas-Saint-Laurent region and the Gaspésie-Îles-de-la-Madeleine region.
Our team is very pleased with the implementation of this important project, which places a key international player in the Bas-Saint-Laurent region. We have been working with Duravit for several years to showcase Quebec and the beautiful Matane region. This is the beginning of a business relationship that we are confident will generate significant economic benefits for all of Quebec," Hubert Bolduc, president of Investissement Québec International.

In addition to climate-neutral production at the plant, logistics are also designed to be sustainable. All raw materials are sourced directly on-site in Canada, as well as from the US, which means short transportation distances. This further reduces emissions and ensures an environmentally friendly supply chain. The ceramic parts produced in Canada are mainly for the North American market and thus play a decisive role in the company's growth strategy.

I am very proud and pleased to welcome Duravit to our city. Today Matane stands out as a strong city, an economic pillar and a center attracting companies from all over the world. I appreciate the exceptional work done by all our partners in this project and, of course, the Duravit team, with whom we have worked so well from the very beginning. Companies are key allies in the development of our city, and the arrival of an international company like Duravit can only be a source of joy, affirming the economic vitality of Matane now and in the future," Eddy Métivier, mayor of Matane.

Stephan Tahy, CEO Duravit AG

Stephan Tahy, CEO of Duravit AG

© Duravit AG

We are very proud to act as forerunners in the design of a sustainable sanitary industry and to actively address the challenges of climate change. At Duravit, we are thus setting new standards for implementing innovative solutions in a sector characterized by high energy consumption - Stephan Tahy, CEO of Duravit.

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