Video 1 March 2024

Ditching single-use plastics at work

We’ve all seen it – single-use plastics piling up in the office, only to end up in general waste or incineration facilities. Coffee cups, plastic bottles, takeaway food packaging… that’s a lot of plastic going to waste. And that’s why organisations need to step up with more sustainable ways of managing waste as part of their net zero strategy.

Tackling the plastic problem

Wondering how to do it? Start by separating plastics at the source. Get to know your polymers like PET and HDPE – these are in high demand thanks to companies wanting to use recycled plastic in their products. And there’s a lot of handy solutions to help with plastic segregation. For example, reverse vending machines can identify the polymer in products and recycle them properly.

Here at Mitie, we’re helping customers cut down on plastic while also finding ways to improve segregation. That can be through staff training, better signage and effective waste management. Plus, we can help with collecting plastic polymers so organisations are able to benefit from their value in the resource market.

A circular approach to sustainability

Many of our customers have recognised the need for change, moving away from the old ‘take-make-waste’ model to a more circular approach. That means saying goodbye to traditional waste and recycling schemes and embracing a more resource-driven mindset, which leads to a greener waste management system.

Five tips for a greener waste strategy

Ready to embrace this circular approach to plastic? Here are a few tips:

  1. Educate your people. Run training sessions about the importance of plastic segregation and recycling, along with the right procedures.
  2. Sort out your signage. Make sure it’s clear, visible and tells people exactly how to handle waste, so everything ends up in the right place.
  3. Use smart waste solutions. Use devices like reverse vending machines that can sort and collect plastics accurately for the best recycling results.
  4. Engage suppliers. Work together to find ways to minimise plastic packaging and switch to more planet-friendly alternatives.
  5. Monitor progress. Regularly check that your waste initiatives are working and make tweaks to get the best outcomes.

Reaping the benefits of going circular

By going circular, you’ll not only help make the planet a cleaner place but also position your organisation as a leader in circularity. That’s a win-win situation, boosting green credentials and showing a commitment to caring for the environment – something that’s often on the minds of consumers and stakeholders.

Start making changes today, and let’s join forces to create a cleaner, greener landscape.

Insights from Sarah Dorey, Sustainability and Circularity Consultant at Mitie.

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