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Woodstock's Dordan Manufacturing celebrates 55th anniversary

WOODSTOCK – Dordan Manufacturing is striving to grow its business and stay on top of technology trends such as robotics use as it celebrates its 55th anniversary.

Woodstock-based Dordan is a thermoformed packaging manufacturing company that creates products such as plastic clamshell and tray packaging for clients across industries.

“We take pretty much anything and make a package to go around it,” said Chandler Slavin, sustainability, marketing and account manager with Dordan.

The full-service company wants to stay on top of every aspect of a products creation, from its design to its eventual completion and storage for clients, Slavin said.

Dordan, located off Route 14 in Woodstock, is celebrating its 55th anniversary. The company got its start in a small building on Elston Avenue in Chicago in 1961, and incorporated a year later. In the 1980s, the company bought a larger facility after current CEO Dan Slavin took control of Dordan from his father, Edwin Slavin, in 1978.

The business has been in Woodstock since 1994. Its facility has about 50,000 square feet of production and office space, with an additional 75,000 square feet of warehouse space. It typically has several hundred clients at any given time and employs between 40 and 50 people, Slavin said.

“We really are about Woodstock, the community and McHenry County,” Slavin said. “We want to be as much of an asset to the local community and workforce here as we possibly can.”

Dordan makes products for health care, beauty, retail, automotive and electronics industry clients, among others, Slavin said. The business also creates its thousands of unique production tools on-site, which at times requires handcrafting.

“A lot of our competitors buy their tools from somebody else because its not a profit center,” Slavin said. “We are just really into controlling the entire process, and the tooling is so important to that process we choose to do it all on site.”

In the coming months, Dordan intends to implement robotics into its workflow. The robot will help make one of the final steps of the manufacturing process, such as cutting the product away from its plastic “web” and automating other manual aspects of the production process.

“The robot is the newest thing coming,” Slavin said of the company’s future. “Expansion might be in the future as we continue to offer these high-value services.”

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