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Grand Rapids, Michigan production plant

The Grand Rapids, MI plant was first opened in 1908 as Grand Rapids Varnish Company to support the booming furniture industry. At the time and for the next 40+ years, Grand Rapids was the "Furniture Capital of the World." As Grand Rapids grew and became more diversified, so did the facility by adding technologies to supply products to a wide range of industries.

The Grand Rapids plant produces resin technologies, including waterborne, conventional and high solids solvent-borne resins and high performance coatings for formulators of architectural coatings, industrial finishes, construction products, traffic paints, and container coatings ink products.  Visit the Coating Resins site for more information on our products.

Aerial view of the Grand Rapids, MI site

Product brands include:

  • CHEMPOL® Alkyd resins include conventional, high solids and water reducible versions for use in interior and exterior paints, industrial coatings and finishes.
  • CHEMPOL® Polyester resins are used in coil coating, metal coatings and industrial baking systems. They provide excellent flexibility, durability, adhesion and appearance.
  • CHEMPOL® Oil-free polyester resins for use in can and coil coatings including new product development resins based on biosourced raw materials.
  • SYNAQUA™ Alkyd dispersions are water-borne products used in decorative coatings.
Arkema's Grand Rapids site performs regular safety drills with the help of the Grand Rapids fire department.
Arkema is committed to the communities it serves through Common Ground.

Community news

Grand Rapids Annual Safety Day

With help from the Grand Rapids Fire Department and members of their Hazmat Response Unit, Arkema’s Grand Rapids, MI site dramatized a rescue/response scenario as part of its annual Safety Day.

Site employees and members of the fire department enjoyed lunch together following the successful training and shared critique of safety procedures and helpful information for future drills.

Community involvement

  • "Believe to Be" - Sponsorship and mentoring of summer youth science program. 
  • Grand Rapids Fire Department – Our site has a long standing relationship with the Grand Rapids Fire Department and supports them by participating in emergency preparedness drills.
  • Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) – We participate, along with other area industry, in working together with community members twice a year to discuss and address any questions and concerns.

Local associations / Events we sponsor

  • Grand Rapids Chamber of Commerce member
  • Michigan Manufacturer Association (MMA)

Key figures for 2015

# of employees 27
Local economic impact (payroll/utility/property taxes paid annually)  Annual economic impact to the community is ~ $3 million as a result of site operations
Investment in health, environment and safety ~$1 Million in approved capital investments in 2015 for health, safety, and environmental projects
● Mechanical integrity improvements to safeguard against equipment failures
● Piping upgrade to minimize the likelihood of environmental release
● Site survey for health safety and environmental issues leading to several small projects to improve overall safety
Safety record  No recordable injuries for 10+ months
Awards/Certifications for safety, environmental, and quality

ISO 9001:2008 - Quality

● OHSAS 18001:2007 - Health/Safety
● Nominated for American Chemistry Council 2014 Injury-Free Safety Award

Chempol® is a registered trademark of Arkema Inc.
Last updated: December 17, 2015