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It's curtains for microplastics

It's curtains for microplastics

Agricultural fabrics from Renegade Plastics can help minimize microplastic waste.

By Andrew Joseph,; Image courtesy of Herculite Products Inc. and Renegade Plastics

We are all aware that plastics are used in a wide range of agricultural industries, from hoop house covers to barn curtains, mulching, and more.

Unfortunately, when most plastics break down, they result in microplastic pollution.

According to a 2022 report prepared by the United Nations, these tiny pieces of plastic are accumulating in the soil at an “alarming rate.” Researchers have found that this accumulation of plastic waste has numerous detrimental effects on the soil microbiome, crop growth, livestock reproductive function, and human health.

Fortunately, leading fabric company Herculite Products Inc.—headquartered in Emigsville, Pennsylvania—has introduced a line of green, sustainable barn curtains featuring Renegade Plastics’ recyclable, better-for-the-planet agricultural fabrics.

Barn curtains protect livestock from the elements, increase air circulation, control temperature, and manage light for better production.

Herculite has been manufacturing high-quality, durable curtains for the poultry, hog, and dairy markets for decades. Now, with the help of Renegade’s evolutionary fabric, they are launching a sustainable alternative that is free from forever chemicals, is recyclable, and reduces microplastic pollution compared to conventionally woven polyethylene barn curtains.

“Herculite is known for its innovation and ability to understand the emerging needs of its customers. They visualize solutions and deliver innovative products and services that help them grow their businesses,” said Curran Hughes, the co-founder of Renegade Plastics, which is headquartered in Golden, Colorado. “As the agriculture industry evolves, there is a demand for more sustainable textiles that are better for our animals and soils with no loss of strength or durability. We are proud to offer a fabric that paves the way towards a healthier farming and ranching future.”

The fabric that Renegade Plastics uses in Herculite’s line of eco-friendly barn curtains is a medium-duty polypropylene-based coated fabric that is free from phthalates, dioxins, PFAS, and heavy metals like lead.

This evolutionary material offers maximum UV stability, and based on evidence from lab tests and anecdotes from field pilots, it lets in less thermal infrared radiation than polyethylene-based products while also proving to be a better insulator.

These materials are recyclable with Renegade’s assistance, making them a key purchase for operations looking to enhance their circularity and keep microplastics out of their soil and livestock.

The companies say that Herculite barn curtains made with Renegade Plastics’ fabrics are better for animal welfare and for reducing plastic waste in the agricultural industry.

“Herculite is excited to add another sustainable solution to our line of products,” stated Chad Twombly, Herculite’s Vice President of Direct Sales. “Herculite has been serving the livestock market with long-lasting, high-performing curtains for over 60 years. We have been looking for a sustainable solution to the polyethylene curtain option for years. With the Renegade material, we can help reduce microplastic contamination, extend the life of the curtain, and provide a recyclable solution to the market.”

Herculite has been an innovative fabric company for 65 years, specializing in high-performance laminated and coated fabric. As one of the founders of the synthetic fabric industry, Herculite pioneered the use of laminated fabrics in many different industries.

For more information on the agricultural curtains, go to or contact Herculite directly at

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In Swine Versation: Swine Industry Age Gaps with Taylor Rock, Production Supervisor at Heimerl Farms

Video: In Swine Versation: Swine Industry Age Gaps with Taylor Rock, Production Supervisor at Heimerl Farms

Welcome back to another episode of In Swine Versation. Taylor Rock, Production Supervisor at Heimerl Farms joins us with a discussion focused on Age Gap from Older and Younger where to many are retiring before properly teaching the Youth on the Swine Farm. We also discuss Taylor's journey and workplace culture. Achieving 93% farrowing rates over the last 3 years. In his young career he has seen it all from Fires, hailstones, herd closures, herd breaks, Batch farm conversation, prs roll over. Taylor you addresses a hot topic regarding the "Family Farm"and Working Environment and wraps on answering; What is something we can do to sustain to make the Pork Industry greater by at least 10% over the next 10 years?

About our guest I was born and raised in Colorado. I grew up on a registered black angus cattle ranch and was involved in showing animals through 4-H. After graduating high school I went onto Kansas State University. I received my Bachelor of Science in Animal Science and Industry with a Production Management option. During my studies I partook in a single internship that led to my career in the swine industry. I was able to gain valuable experience working in a variety of farms including my time managing a 4,600 head sow unit. After that, I moved to Ohio to take on a new role with Heimerl Farms overseeing the production of their sow farms.



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