How to speed up your sustainable plastics mission

August 24, 2022

Green is good – not only for the environment, but your business' profit potential. More manufacturers, retailers, suppliers and customers will take you on if there's a sustainable agenda in motion. A study from IO Sustainability and Babson College shows that planning and executing corporate responsibility can raise your market share by 6% over a 15-year period, while market value may grow at a rate of 40-80% of the competitor average. Additionally, it'll bring new staff to your door. The 2020 Porter Novelli Tracker report states that 88% of American workers believe "it is no longer acceptable for companies to just make money"; they must help society at large — beyond basic employment.

Plastic waste is another box tick for these pledges to responsibility. As a logistics operator, it pays to be curious about the latest guidance for using and processing plastic — the faster you can reach those sustainability objectives, the better. Here are some methods for improving waste management.

Use recycled stretch film
Palletized distribution is becoming more popular in warehouses around the world. Stretch film is the obvious choice for keeping goods packed and organized. But more innovations are taking place within stretch film production; you may want to find ultra-thin, partially recycled alternatives for your pallet hood covers. Make sure you have your own recycling system in place as well — a baling machine on site, for instance, which can prepare old film for collection.

Add clear weight labels to your packages
Shelving and picking products is a delicate business. If you load too few at a time, you'll be working hard for a healthy quota. Load too many at once, however, and you'll run the risk of tearing or snapping protective plastic in transit. To preserve your packaging, assign the correct weight for everything that moves through your warehouse. Find a labeling partner for pallets, cantilevers and drive-through racks. Upgrade your weight scaling system if necessary for a more precise view of what's coming in and out.

Install sufficient waste sacks
Searching for smarter recycling solutions on limited floor space? Waste sacks are brilliant for staying flexible wherever workers happen to be, without taking up much room for shelves and equipment. You can attach them to walls, railings, trolleys and roll cages, ready for any plastic disposal on the move. Racksack is a particularly strong product. It's made from tough, waterproof polyester that can handle much larger quantities than it may first appear to be capable of.

Appoint your 'waste champion'
Educating your staff about plastic reduction is great for morale and awareness. Go further with a dedicated waste champion —  someone who's especially concerned with your environmental footprint. Crown one of these individuals at each warehouse facility; they'll remind and encourage fellow workers to stick to low-waste principles. You might even want to set up an incentive scheme for employees who follow the rules more closely.