Our R&D and design approach follows the principles of eco-design meaning that we heavily pursue the development of:
Our considered selection of high-quality raw materials and special fibre geometries is key to ensuring we achieve a balance of sustainability, performance and longevity for our products.
The filaments (turf fibres) of our synthetic turf systems are made only from 100% polyethylene. Among other things, this plastic leads the way with lower resource consumption and excellent recyclability compared to other polymers. In addition, polyethylene does not contain any plasticisers, and even when it is incinerated, no harmful substances are released.
For those synthetic turf systems that require infill, Polytan offers a selection of infill options including EPDM and SBR granules as well as natural alternatives, cork and Brockfill. Options vary according to pricing, performance attributes and environmental benefits, but all are safe to use.
Our EPDM (ethylene-propylene-diene rubber) is a material which offers environmental and health benefits compared to the waste tyre granules used in the past. They not only comply with the EU REACH (chemicals) regulation but also with the even stricter DIN EN 71-3 regulation. Our newest addition to the infill mix is Brockfill – an organic highly engineered wood particle infill specifically designed to improve traction and reduce artificial turf heat.
It’s important to understand differences between the infills to make an informed decision about which one will be the most sustainable and deliver the desired performance for your project.
Reducing negative environmental influences is also an important factor for the production of our products. Our main focus is on reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions, which will have the greatest potential to minimise our environmental footprint.
By making significant changes to our worldwide manufacturing facilities such as more efficient lighting, compressed air machines and cooling systems, as well as increasing the use of renewables as our main source of energy, Sport Group is making some impactful progress.
According to Sport Group’s 2022 ESG report, Sport Group achieved a 25% reduction in GHG emissions by 2021 (Scope 1 & 2) compared to the 2018 baseline year. By 2021 Sport Group had achieved a 25% reduction in GHG emissions (Scope 1 & 2) compared to the 2018 baseline year. Sport Group’s carbon intensity (Scope 1 & 2) had reduced by 30% compared to the 2018. In order to monitor our emissions on the path to zero emissions by 2050 we have committed ourselves to annual CO2 emissions tracking and reporting.
For many sports such as athletics, hockey and tennis, artificial surfaces have been established as a global standard for decades. But our artificial turf systems are now also a serious alternative to natural turf for sports such as football, soccer and rugby, especially for high usage fields. Our high-quality artificial turf systems such as LigaTurf offer significant benefits as they are sturdier, longer-lasting and easier to maintain, while offering consistent playing properties.
A prerequisite for our artificial turf to minimise its environmental impact is to ensure it has a useful life. With an average life span of 12 years, Polytan‘s artificial turf systems reach peak value even with intensive use. High-quality materials as well as special geometries and technologies for improving UV resistance, water storage and abrasion resistance ensure a long service life and low maintenance costs.
Artificial turf can help to protect or even preserve valuable natural areas. In temperate climates, a synthetic turf field can cater for the same amount of use as three natural turf fields. In extreme climates, this ratio can be even higher. Therefore, by introducing an artificial turf system, we are preserving our natural grass fields for lighter use and protecting the ecosystem.
Mowing or fertilising is also not required with synthetic turf and continuous watering is not necessary.
When it comes to our synthetic turf systems, the comfort and protection of the players is just as important as performance and sustainability. In recent years significant improvements have been made in this respect, which have reduced the immediate risk of accidents and injuries. In the medium and long term as well, our synthetic turf systems, with their long-lasting and consistent elasticity, make it possible to play sports without long-term damage to the musculoskeletal system. This has also been confirmed by FIFA studies, which certify that artificial turf poses no greater risk of injury than natural turf.
Sport Group Asia Pacific is proud to be a founding partner of Australia’s first synthetic turf recovery and recycling service.
RE4ORM is an Australian first sustainability service that diverts synthetic turf from landfill through the recovery, reuse, recycling and reduction of sand, rubber & plastic to create products that can be employed within the synthetic turf and other industries.
Supported by Sustainability Victoria and the Victorian State Government, RE4ORM’s circular motivation is closing the loop by utilising Australia’s first synthetic turf recovery & recycling facility in Barnawartha, near the Victoria-NSW border.
It is due to open in early 2024. Stay tuned for more…
For those synthetic turf systems that require infill, Polytan offers a selection of infill options including cork and Brockfill, which are a natural alternative to EPDM and SBR granules.
Cork is a natural, renewable material that is also suited to use as infill for synthetic turf pitches. It boasts good cushioning properties and is applied over a layer of sand. What’s more, the odourless material obtained from the bark of cork oak and is completely biodegradable.
Synthetic turf filled with BrockFILL™ feels like natural turf and falls within the optimal traction range. The infill material meets the requirements of the FIFA quality programme for synthetic turf systems, as well as those of World Rugby.