24th Mar 2022
Why is it important to make single stream waste material available for recycling and design products and processes with the full lifecycle in mind? Duo Brand Director, Zoe Brimelow explains in Insider North West March’s issue.
Products or processes should be designed with the full lifecycle in mind. This will design out waste and ensure any waste ends up back where it can be reused.
When it comes to recycling and re-use of polyethylene products such as mailing bags, segregation of waste by material type is key. This helps reduce contamination, resulting in a better recycled pellet, giving more opportunity for this to be reused at a higher level; ideally used to make a new version of what it was originally. High quality recycled material is essential because of the nature of the manufacturing process, and critical performance requirements of the products.
Reflecting on the transportation of waste, Zoe advised:
“Avoid transporting air. Compact waste using balers to optimise weight of waste per pallet, leading to less vehicles.”
Collaboration is key for businesses to successfully move to sustainable and circular business models. Some online retailers have around 40% of items returned, so we’ve worked together with them to collect returned packaging and recycle the waste in a closed loop recycling system. The recycled material is used to manufacture new products and reduce dependency on virgin materials. Last year, Duo’s recycled material accounted for more than 45% of the raw material used.
Speaking about reducing usage of virgin material, Zoe said: “Polythene, is a recyclable material that can be used to make new packaging products. The challenge for us was to capture this waste stream and this was enhanced after the plastic tax announcement. We have installed balers in our clients’ warehouses specifically for their polythene waste, and we collect any waste bales when we deliver new products.
We have also helped educate our clients teams, so they feel more involved in the change. We believe it is important to get employees on board so they can understand how taking extra care with recycling can help the environment. “
As featured in Insider NW March 2022 issue