What was involved in the testing of the bio resins?
We built two boats and then tested them on Lake Okanagan. We found the product to be useful and since then, we have built all our boats with bio-resins. That started us down the path of using alternative materials. For example, before we switched our floatation foam to green foam, the processing was highly toxic, and the operators had to use a space suit. However, the eco materials are non-toxic. Under lean manufacturing, it is an exercise in every step of the product to eliminate waste. We’ve taken that same practice and apply it to going green. Our next step is to put bio-resin down for the skin coat.
How has that experiment panned out?
It’s a challenge, because every one of these products is premium. When we started using Ashland’s Envirez, oil was $150 a barrel. Then it dropped to $40 per barrel. Now it’s back up to $100 barrel. It is a premium product, but we’re negotiating hard with our suppliers. They want the business and we want service to be better, because we strive to be the leader in eco-friendly boat manufacturing.