Support of REACH and the Green Deal

FEICA celebrates its 50 year anniversary. We spoke to Kristel Ons about the history of the assocation, plans for the anniversary and key issues on the agenda.

Kristel Ons_Feica
Kristel Ons has been Secretary General of The Association of the European Adhesive & Sealant Industry since June 2020. Source: FEICA

FEICA is turning 50 years this year. What do you plan for the anniversary?

Kristel Ons: Over the last half-century, FEICA, the European adhesive and sealant industry it represents, and its members have gone through technological and societal transformations and a whole host of innovations and events. All these achievements, spanning decades, are being put in the spotlight this year. In addition, a series of webinars, dealing with topics ranging from sustainability to the registration of polymers, is demonstrating our ambitions and targets for the future. We started celebrating our 50th anniversary in FEICA’s quarterly newsletter ‘CONNECT’ with interviews of our members. We are also publishing two books. The first is an illustrated book, with photos from our archives as well as anecdotes that highlight 50 years of FEICA. For the second, FEICA commissioned Bernd Mayer and Andreas Gross at the Fraunhofer IFAM to write a study ‘Adhesive Bonding Technology in the 21st Century – Synergy of Technological and Ecological Potentials’. Both publications will be handed out at the 2022 European Adhesive and Sealant Conference & EXPO, set in the Grand Elysée Hotel in Hamburg, Germany, from 14 to 16 September 2022. The event will also feature a 50 Years exhibition and video.

There will also be a special exhibition at the FEICA conference. What is planned there?

Ons: In parallel with the exhibition of our suppliers, we will show a timeline of the past 50 years with milestones in world history and our industry serving as the backdrop for FEICA’s work.

Looking back, what have been some of the highlights in FEICA’s history?

Ons: FEICA was established in Düsseldorf, Germany, in 1972, and moved to Brussels in 2007 to be closer to the European Commission and other associations. In 2006, FEICA changed from a Federation with National Associations Members only to a mixed association representing company members, national associations and affiliate members. Since its inception, FEICA has continued to expand its areas of interest. The Single Europe Act (1986) and the Treaty on the European Union (1992) marked a shift of focus towards the European level. FEICA grew considerably during the time leading up to the implementation of REACH in 2007 and, more recently, the European Union Green Deal in 2019.

What issues have been and will continue to be on FEICA’s agenda this year?

Ons: FEICA’s support of REACH and of the EU Green Deal remains very significant. Our industry develops adhesives and sealants solutions that enable customers and industries to operate more sustainably. In this way, we enable sustainability and contribute to a circular economy.The new EU restriction on diisocyanates, related to the safe use of products with a total monomeric diisocyanate concentration of above 0.1%, was adopted on 4 August 2020. FEICA, together with the diisocyanates producers and several other downstream associations, launched a training programme to ensure safe use by industrial and professional users all over Europe. All will need to be trained by 24 August 2023. FEICA will also continue to actively support the efforts of the European Commission to develop a comprehensive regulatory framework that will help to protect human health and the environment, without losing the competitiveness and innovativeness of the European industry. Last, but not least, all through our 50-year history, we have remained very active in specific market areas such as food packaging and construction, and more recently one-component foams and electronics.

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