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Croatia: GEC moving from production of Plastic to Bio Bags

The machine
New Extruder that enables production of bags with less plastic and bags from BioMaterial.
Is there a better place to do business in "Harmony with Nature", than in Nature itself? That is exactly what GEC, a family owned company located in Gorski Kotar - the “Green Heart”, of Croatia is doing. 

GEC has been in production of plastic bags and packaging business for more than 30 years now, and is supplying various sectors with their products: from the food and beverage industry to construction and the wood industry to name only a few. In addition to the local market, GEC is also working for clients from Zagreb and the Split Area, the City of Varaždin and other areas in Croatia, but is also exporting its products to neighboring Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Austria and other countries.

GEC’ professional approach, quality of their products, short delivery and ability to accommodate to clients’ specific needs are some of the basic reasons why companies are turning to GEC, and why its clients base is expanding constantly. Therefore, it is not surprising that many of its new clients reach GEC simply by the word of mouth.

Growing Interest in Green Products

While susceptible to clients’ needs, GEC is conscious about the principles of sustainable development in its business, and so are many of its clients. Many of GEC’ clients have in fact expressed their interest in using eco-friendly products.

GEC has seen this not only as a business, but also as an opportunity to do something good for nature. The company has decided that the next step in its business should be production of greener bags that use less plastic, gradually replacing of plastic bags with bags produced from biodegradable material.

"Business in Harmony with Nature"

To do that, GEC needed new, modern machines, with superior functionalities. The company applied for Norway Grants with the project “Business in Harmony with Nature” the first call for proposals in the Business Development and Innovation Programme in Croatia. Innovation Norway’s Team in Zagreb recognised the potential of the project, and awarded a grant of 169,000 euro.

The project was completed earlier this year, and the machines are now up and running. GEC is now able to expand to new markets and accept new, large orders, and orders for production of more eco-friendly bags.

It is expected that by 2023, the Company will use approx. 5.000 kg of bio-based, biodegradable and compostable thermoplastic material for the production of bio-based bags, and increase its revenues by 20%, as a direct result of the project.

Satisfied with the Cooperation

And when it comes to cooperation with Innovation Norway, this is what Irena Gec, CEO in GEC has said:

“We are extremely satisfied with our cooperation with Innovation Norway. It has been very short period of time from the submission of the application until the end of our project. By acquiring the new equipment we have opened up to a possibility of producing new products, increasing capacity and savings in inputs consumption per product. With our experience in the production of plastic packaging and with your financial assistance we are boldly moving forward in conquering new markets”.

We are now becoming even more conscious about using eco- bags in our daily lives, and wish GEC a lot of success in its business!

Business Development and Innovation Croatia

The project is supported by Norway through the Norway Grants. See more on the Business Development and Innovation Programme in Croatia.

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