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Reduce and recycle your retail business waste

retail business waste
Published: July 21, 2020

Retail businesses are typically fast paced and customer focused. Waste management is the last thing on your mind when it comes to running the store – but it does not have to be that way. At Solo Resource Recovery, we work with many retail businesses to assist them to manage their waste disposal needs more efficiently and strategically. Incorporating recycling into how your business operates is a fantastic way to help your business run smoothly and do your bit for the environment.
Having bins onsite and accessible to customers helps your business run efficiently. If there are no bins nearby, many people will litter rather than hold on to their rubbish. Providing a bin for customer use will reduce the cleaning burden. Consider using a bin with a mixed waste and a recycling compartment – this will encourage recycling where it is possible.

Packaging of stock is a key area of waste production for many retail businesses. Often, items are packaged in vast amounts of plastic and cardboard, which is entirely unnecessary. You can ask your suppliers if they offer options that are lighter on packaging. If this is not possible, the next best option is to recycle. If possible, you can evaluate the type of products you sell. Furniture giant Ikea famously reduced costs by making certain items stackable, so more of them can be transported in the same truck. This type of design cuts down on expenditure in multiple ways, including by reducing packaging waste.

For many retail businesses, it is a wise choice to have a dedicated waste paper bin for the back room. You likely go through plenty of paper and cardboard due to paperwork, packaging, and receipt of goods. A paper and cardboard only recycling bin is a great option in these circumstances. It can even save you money if you are typically filling your mixed waste bins with bulky cardboard boxes. Free up the bin space by investing in recycling. At Solo Resource Recovery, we support both mixed recyclable collections, and paper and cardboard only recycling. The options available, and the most efficient way forward, is usually determined by the amount of waste you produce. If you have copious amounts of cardboard waste, as many retail businesses do, this is a good option to explore.

It is important that all your staff are trained in recycling processes in your store. This can be delivered through a simple information session, followed up with signage in crucial areas such as where stock is unpacked and near any bins. Staff may also have more ideas for how to reduce and recycle waste in your store, being that they are the ones working on the front lines of retail. It is imperative that all workers understand any waste management changes, or the new system will not work as intended.

Finally, think about the waste footprint of your store after your customers leave. You would rarely directly see the impact of your product and packaging choices, as these are not typically disposed of on-site. A policy as simple as encouraging the use of reusable bags can greatly reduce the impact of your business on the environment.

Call us at Solo Resource Recovery to assist you in your business waste management needs. We can be reached by phone on 1300 46 76 56 or via a message through our website contact page.

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