Waste management

Robert van Veen | Facilities Manager

’Our roll packer compacts our wood waste to such an extent that we have been able to reduce wood transports from 1 every 10 days to 6 per year. This has brought both costs and carbon emissions down.’

Sustainable business practices

Being an active player in the metal industry, there’s no escaping it: we produce waste. And waste has an adverse impact on people, animals, and the environment. Litter leads to soil contamination, pollutes our water, and animals choke on it. So, pick it up and throw it in a bin! But also separate it. This will reduce the harmful substances released by waste incineration and enables more recycling.

How we handle waste is an important aspect of our commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). And that is why we thought we’d write this piece to give you a look behind the scenes of our waste processing. To show you how we are also raising the bar in that respect. For each other and for our future. Will you read along?

Robert van Veen, Facilities Manager, explains:

‘Most of our waste is steel, aluminium, and wood. We have mapped out these waste streams and come up with a system to encourage waste separation and optimise waste disposal. This has resulted in less transport. We are also trying to minimise waste production overall, because you won’t have to dispose of waste if you don’t produce any in the first place.

Waste containers
In each of our nine factory buildings, we have placed recognisable waste containers. At the office, we have replaced the separate waste bins with central bins for separate collection.

Steel, aluminium, and wood

Steel / Aluminium
At around 140,000kg per year, this is our largest waste product. We separate aluminium in four categories based on the level of reusability. Each category has different yields. The containers for these categories are placed right next to the machines where the waste is produced. 

Every single transport from and to our premises generates wood waste, because wood is an important packaging material. We’re talking around 65,000kg of wood waste per year. To reduce this, we found a solution that is still fairly unusual in our industry; we bought a roll packer!

Robert: ‘This roll packer compacts the wood waste to such an extent that we have been able to reduce wood transports from 1 every 10 days to 6 per year. This brings down the costs, but more importantly the carbon emissions.’

How does Robert see the future?
’We keep raising our game. For the new building, we are already looking into automated disposal of machine waste through trenches in the ground. We also switched to Wepapercycle coffee cups recently, which sees us recycle our own coffee cups into our own toilet paper. In short: with these kinds of developments, the end is nowhere near in sight!’

See below how the roll packer works