Sustainability in Spanish tile production: the LIFE Foundrytile project

May 18, 2017

Ceramic tile is inherently one of the most sustainable building products available. Created from natural clay, it is transformed into a high-performance, easy-to-maintain material. Plus, Tile of Spain manufacturers are consistently on the forefront of technical and sustainable design. Now they are taking that sustainability knowledge and further applying it to manufacturing through the LIFE Foundrytile project.


The main objective of the LIFE Foundrytile project is to repurpose the fine fraction and sands of iron smelting for the production of ceramic tiles. The study arises from the coincidence between the quantities generated from this type of by-products and their composition with the different raw materials used in ceramic production.


This 36-month project is co-financed by the European Union under the LIFE program. The innovative character of the study results come from taking advantage of the disposable production waste of one industry and using it as raw material in another industry. This contributes to the circular economy, producing savings in both industries and reducing their environmental impact. Pilot testing is in progress to validate the technical, economic and environmental viability of the resulting products.


In Spain the production of ceramic tiles could absorb all the byproducts generated in iron smelting. If replicated in Europe, the ceramic industry would be able to absorb 75% of this type of waste.
Learn more about the project at


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