WORCESTER, Mass.—Jefferson Rubber Works Inc. got a taste of the plastics industry in 2014 and sees bigger things on the horizon.
The firm, which purchased a plastic injection molding machine in June 2014 to support its business in the pet care industry, sees more opportunities for plastics and may add another by the end of the year or early 2016.
Jefferson Rubber Works molds flavored chew toys for pets out of polyurethane and plastic materials.
Dave Pentland, president of Jefferson Rubber Works, said the firm is looking to expand its plastics business outside of the pet industry. The firm secured business to mold a polyurethane medical product for the equine industry in addition to soliciting other new business opportunities.
“There is a lot less going offshore and a lot more domestic opportunities,” he said. “Certainly in pet products there is a big push for American-made toys and that kind of thing. They kind of equate what's gone on with the pet foods in China with the pet toys. People are looking for a better sense of mind as to what their pets are playing with.”
The addition of the machine last year added about four more jobs at the company.
Pentland said future investments—such as a second plastics molding machine and bigger molding machinery to support the U.S.-based fluid transfer rubber business—could add anywhere from five to 10 more jobs in the next two years.