Businesses across the nation will come together to celebrate Recycle Week from the 17th to the 21st of October 2022. This annual event aims to inspire residents and businesses to recycle more of the right things, more often.
This year, Recycle Now’s flagship event will focus on the theme “Let’s Get Real”, which challenges perceptions about recycling to improve recycling behaviours.
Recycle Week aims to bring together retailers, brands, businesses, government, media and waste management companies to educate the public and help improve our recycling habits.
Local businesses can play a major role in this, so keep reading to learn more about how you can help.
How to participate in Recycle Week 2022
Last year, Recycle Week resulted in 9 million digital impressions, with 82% of people saying they had changed their behaviour as a result of seeing Recycle Week 2021 content.
These numbers indicate just how massive of an impact education can have on public recycling habits. Moreover, businesses are at the forefront of this annual event, which gives you the opportunity to help inspire sustainable practices.
This is why Recycle Week offers free downloads and assets for UK businesses to plan their own campaign activity during the event. This pack also includes more details for how you can get involved.
While joining the annual initiative is a meaningful way to help improve national recycling habits, it is also important to think about what you can do on your own premises and on a more permanent basis.
Reducing business waste is the top priority
One of the most effective ways to step up your business’ recycling efforts is actually by creating less waste in the first place. Reducing the amount of materials that need to be disposed of is far more beneficial than creating waste and recycling it.
Consuming less within your company will directly impact the amount of products that have to be made and transported, as well as the amount of energy and resources that will be required to recycle or dispose of this waste afterwards. From single-use items to the packaging used in the supply chain, there are lots of areas where you can reduce the amount of materials required, but one of the easiest places to start is with food waste.
Food service and hospitality sector companies (like hotels, restaurants, pubs and cafes) in particular can benefit from reducing their waste. According to WRAP, of the food thrown out within these sectors, 21% of their waste comes from food spoilage, 45% from food preparation and 34% from uneaten food. Food waste and wastage is a major source of carbon emissions which are created by the food production system.
Just by reducing the amount of food waste created and then keeping food waste separate for recycling, your business can make a big difference. It will also help you save money through reducing the quantity of food you have to order and from lower waste collection costs.
To learn more about reducing waste, download our free guide: 9 tips to reduce waste
Separate and recycle the correct items
After you have reduced how much waste you produce, the next step is to make sure you separate and recycle the correct items. This will help you comply with the legal requirement for all businesses to recycle, as set out in the Environment Act 2019. This law requires all businesses to properly separate their waste for recycling. Additionally, recycling correctly reduces your waste management costs.
One of the most important goals of Recycle Week this year is to avoid contaminating your recycling with non-recyclable items or items which are recycled in specialist ways. For example, coffee cups cannot be recycled via regular mixed recycling or paper/cardboard recycling. Coffee cups can only be recycled via a specialist process at a recycling mill with a bespoke pulping process which separates the plastic liner from the paper fibres. This process ensures used coffee cups can be recycled into new paper which is used for shopping bags.
Glass and paper/cardboard should be recycled separately from other materials since this helps improve recycling quality and minimises the environmental impact of recycling processes. environmental impact. It is also a lot cheaper for you to recycle these streams separately rather than throwing it away as mixed recycling or general waste.
Other items, such as batteries and printer cartridges can be recycled for free.
To learn more about separating and recycling the correct items, download our free guide: What waste goes where?
Recycling your business waste with Westminster’s Commercial Waste Services
Of course you want to make sure that your commercial waste collector handles your waste properly and ensures it is recycled properly and not dumped abroad. . At Commercial Waste Services, we are proud of the transparent, auditable and ethical way we handle the waste we collect from businesses. We ensure it is handled locally and to a very high standard.
For example, all plastic milk bottles we collect from businesses in Westminster are recycled at our plant in Dagenham where the bottles are cleaned, ground and turned into HDPE pellets for manufacturing new milk bottles. During Recycle Week this facility opens its doors to the public so you can see yourself how plastic recycling works. Another example of high quality recycling is the paper and cardboard we collect in Westminster which we take to a paper mill in Kent that recycles it into new packaging material which will be back on shelves within just 14 days. This ensures a closed-loop recycling solution.
No matter what waste you have, we can offer a recycling solution for most of them.
Recycling correctly and frequently will reduce your business’ environmental impact and also reduce your spend on waste management services. This will help your business maintain more sustainable practices into the future.
To find out more about recycling and how to improve your waste management, download our ultimate guide to recycling by clicking the link below.