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How online retailers can minimise waste


photo-1592500305715-aa0a73023178Over the past few years, there has been a dramatic increase in people shopping online. This shift from traditional retail shopping in a physical location to e-commerce is continuing to grow and become the main type of retail for many people. Although online shopping can be more convenient for people, unfortunately, it can create more waste, mainly due to excess packaging. Consumers are aware of this and becoming increasingly eco-conscious when choosing which brands they buy from. 
Here we discuss how online retailers can minimise waste
 
What are the benefits for retailers minimising their waste

Minimising the waste their company produces does not only benefit the environment. There are many other benefits as well. For example, ensuring the customer knows you have made a conscious effort to reduce waste will help promote your brand and reputation. In addition to this, using less packaging will also cost your business less money in the long run. If a brand takes it time to produce the perfect packaging for their products, they can also use this as a brand-building exercise. For example, branded packaging is more likely to get shared on social media, meaning that your packaging can also act as a form of advertising and can lead to valuable user-generated content. 

Always use recyclable material 

This may seem obvious and is something the majority of online retailers are already doing however brands should consider every element of their packaging and make as many of these elements recyclable or biodegradable. Although cardboard is easy to recycle, ensure any plastic can be recycled and try and avoid polystyrene. Despite polystyrene technically being able to be recycled, in many cases, they have to be disposed of separately which causes an inconvenience to customers. If they place in the normal bin it will inevitably end up at the landfill, whereas if its placed in the household recycling bin it can, in fact, slow down the recycling process. 

Think about the size of the packaging 

Where possible, have the packaging fit to the size of the product. Not only does this help produce left household waste to your customers, but it will also save the business money and lower emissions at the same time. If made to measure packaging is not possible, aim for as close a fit as you can. If customers are ordering something small, try and ensure the packaging can fit through a letterbox. This can help improve the customer experience as it means their products can easily be delivered safely without them needing to be home to receive the parcel. 
When shipping costs are calculated, they are based on dimensional weight. This makes it in the businesses’ interest to ensure their packaging is kept to a minimum.

Consider the contents of the packaging 

It is not only the outer layer of packaging a business must consider. What other types of packaging will the customer receive? Some companies are now using more sustainable materials such as bamboo-based materials instead of plastic and polystyrene. 
In addition to this, can you brand the packaging in any way? As discussed earlier, branded packaging can help improve the customer experience. People are likely to share their purchase on social media if the packaging is as exciting and high quality and the product they have purchased. They are also more likely to recommend your brand to friends and family if they have had a great online shopping experience with them. The online shopping experience doesn’t end once a customer checks out. The product and packaging are just as vital. 

Have a retail waste audit

On a regular basis, carry out a retail waste audit. You can even hire someone to undertake this for you if you are a big company. The audit will involve making a list of all the types of waste, and measure the amount of waste. From there, a plan can be put in place to reduce the amount of waste created. 

Make recycling easy for the customer 

Every business should be recycling. However, they also have a responsibility to ensure their packaging can easily be recycled as well. Make it clear on the packaging that it can be recycled to encourage your customers to do so.

Donate damaged products 

Waste from online retailers does not just come in the form of packaging. It is inevitable that some of their products may end up being slightly damaged and not a high enough standard to send to customers. When this happens, businesses should consider ways to ensure these damaged items do not just get thrown away. Could they be donated to a charity shop? Sold at a discount on your store? Or give them away to members of staff? Any of these options is better than them immediately ending up at a landfill.

Implement an effective inventory management system 

If your products are perishable, it is vital you have a robust inventory management system in place. Having one will ensure more of your products are sold before they reach the end of their sellable life. If the stock is managed correctly, less waste will be created.

Train your staff 

All members of your staff need the training to ensure they understand the importance of reducing waste and giving them the tools to be able to carry out their jobs with a waste-free mindset. Have training sessions so all staff knows your policy. Incorporating ways to significantly reduce waste should become an integral part of your business's culture and therefore your employees much be advocates of this.

Waste is inevitable, however eco-friendly eCommerce is certainly achievable. By taking these steps for how online retailers can minimise waste, businesses will reap the benefits of not only environmental gains but also financial ones.  Customers are also left happy as they have less waste to get rid of and have a great perception of that brand in the future. The steps described above may take a bit of time to implement but they are not difficult things to incorporate into the day to day operations of the business. Therefore, it will not take long for a business to see the difference they are making.

To find out more about how we can help you with your waste disposal and recycling needs, please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information. 

What to look for in a waste removal company


depositphotos_75951419-stock-photo-loaded-dumpsterWhen you have a lot of rubbish to dispose of, hiring a skip may be the best solution. Not only is it a convenient way to remove a large amount of waste in one go, but it also helps avoid fly-tipping. Before you choose which option to go for,  It is always important to consider the following factors when choosing a skip hire company. Here is what to look for in a waste removal company.

Consider what you need to get rid of

Before hiring anyone, consider what the waste is you need to dispose of. Although skips can house a range of items, there are certain products or materials that cannot be placed in the skip. Although there are some overarching rules across the industry, each skip hire company can be different. So it is imperative you check the skip hire company will accept the items you need to throw away.

Ensure they have the right size

If you are doing a Spring clean, undertaking a complete house renovation, or clearing out an office, you must ensure the skip hire company has a skip big enough for your needs. Always go for a slightly bigger size than you anticipate to ensure all your rubbish can be disposed of at the same time and reduce the need for multiple skip hires.

What are their recycling policies

It is possible to contact your skip hire company and find out what their recycling policy is. The impact waste has on the environment, is increasingly concerning and everyone should be playing their part. Whenever possible, a skip hire company should be recycling their products. This is to ensure that the amount of waste that ends up at the landfill is always kept to the absolute minimum.

What is the time frame?

How long do you need the skip for? Check with the skip hire company what time frames they offer. If you are starting a large project, ensure you can keep the skip for a long enough time. Alternatively, if you have the rubbish already collected, check to see if they offer a wait and load service. This can be a convenient and quick option as your waste is quickly collected and taken away immediately. 

Look at reviews

When searching for a skip hire company, it can be beneficial to read reviews before you pick one. This will allow you to read the experience of other clients and this can help you see if they are the right company for your needs. 

These are just 5 factors that you should consider before choosing your skip hire company. You need to ensure you are happy with your choice and that your requirements can be met. Doing so will ensure all your waste will easily be taken care of for you in a convenient, quick way.

To find out more about how we can help you with your waste disposal and recycling needs, please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information. 

How to create a zero- waste home

zero wasteAlthough more and more people are recycling, many homeowners want to create a zero-waste home. Minimising the amount of waste they are producing wherever possible and this goes further than just recycling. Create a zero waste home (or as close to zero as possible) means that your home is as environmentally friendly as possible. 

Here, we discuss some of the things homeowners can put into practice to make their homes as close to zero waste as possible. 

What is a zero-waste home?

What we mean my zero waste is a set of principles and a philosophy that individuals follow to try and prevent waste as much as possible. Some waste is inevitable, however, there are some practical things you can do to help this prevention and stop as much of your rubbish from ending up at landfills, being incinerated or thrown in the ocean as possible.

To begin, you will need to evaluate your current wastefulness and identify the key areas you should focus on.

How to create a zero-waste home 

Eat fresh food
Where possible try and buy fresh fruit and vegetables. This is a great way to reduce the packaging which often is not easily recyclable. It also helps provide you and your family with nutritious meals if they are homemade. If you can, try and buy items in bulk if you have the space to store it. Doing this not only reducing the amount of packaging again, but it also can be a cost-effective way of buying food. 

Be considerate when buying cleaning supplies
Before stocking up on your cleaning supplies, try and use products that are not harmful to the environment and full of dangerous chemicals. There are also more brands that are providing eco refills of their products. Keep the original cleaning bottles and buy the refills. These refills also tend to fit more of the product in, saving packaging. Once you buy the refill just use the original bottle.

There are many cleaners that you use around your home that you could find a more environmentally friendly alternative. For example, you can use a mixture of household items such as vinegar, bicarbonate of soda, and lemons. These are items you tend to already have in the house and saves you having to buy other cleaners.

Stop Junk Mail 
Whenever you receive junk mail, check to see if there is an option to unsubscribe with the sender. Over time, you should hopefully see the amount of junk mail you receive in the post diminish

Donate 
Declutter your home and wherever possible, donate your items to local charities, or sell them online. You will be left with only items that you believe are of use whilst letting other people enjoy the items you no longer want.

Head to the shops with a plan 
Before going to shops, try and have a list with you and stick to it. If you go to the shops without a plan, you will be more likely to buy more than you actually need. This, in turn, will leave you with more packaging and waste to deal with.

Avoid disposable items 
When you have a disposable item, see if there is a reusable option instead. Although these will tend to be more expensive, they will be better value for money over the long run as you get more uses from the same item. From bottles to shopping bags, makeup cotton pads, razors, and more, there are plenty of options.

Compost
Buying a compost bin can really help reduce your waste. It is the perfect location for you to place shredded paper, lawn clipping, and vegetable peelings to name a few. It can be surprising how much waste you can place in your composter instead, over time providing you with rich, fertile compost for your garden. Invest in as large a composter as you can. The larger it is, the more likely you are to use it freely.

Get rid of your waste in a clever way 
It is impossible to have no waste at all in your home. However, there are ways you can get rid of your waste in the best way possible. Using a skip hire, for example, can help you with your waste. Check with the company you are using first to check what their services are. Most skip companies will sort out your waste for you to ensure as much of it as possible will be recycled. This is in an attempt to reduce the amount of waste that will end up at a landfill. Having a skip company do this takes some of the pressure off you at sorting out your rubbish and disposing of it correctly which can sometimes be extremely time-consuming.

14 Things you probably didn’t know you could recycle

LSPS RecyclingOver recent years, as a society, we have become more aware of sustainability and as a result, our recycling rates have increased. People know the usual items that can be recycled such as plastic, paper, plastic bottles etc however, there is a range of surprising things you probably didn’t know you could recycle. Here, we discuss some of these lesser-known recycled products.

Inhalers 
Thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of inhalers are casually thrown away once they are finished with. Many pharmacies will in fact accept these and get them recycled. Check with your local pharmacy first to see if they will take them from you.

Bottle Corks
Recycled corks can be used for a range of items including flooring, sports equipment or insulation among others.

Crayons 
Crayons can easily be recycled and reused in the comfort of your own home. When you have small pieces of crayon left, melt them down into moulds to reincarnate them into brand new crayons. You can mix the colours up for a fun, multi-coloured crayon that the kids will love using.

Tights 
This is one you may not realise but tights can be recycled and repurposed into a range of other products.

VHS Tapes
If you have any of these relics lying around your home (probably hidden in a corner of the attic) you can actually recycle them. They can be dismantled and the pieces reused.

Batteries
Until recently batteries were an item that could not be recycled. However, ways have now be discovered to responsible recycle batteries due to the severe adverse impact they can have on the environment. There are many places that now accept batteries and will take them to be recycled such as supermarkets.

Glasses
If you need a new prescription you may not know what to do with your old pair of glasses. If you return them to your opticians, many have a program in place where they send them to developing countries that are in dire need of them. This can also apply to sunglasses.

Carpet 
When it comes to replacing an old carpet in your home, don’t automatically throw it away. There are some companies that accept carpet and take it away for recycling to reduce the amount that ends up in the landfill. 

CDs and DVDs
Don’t throw your CDs and DVDs away once you have no need for them or if they are damaged. They can be recycled and repurposed into a myriad of other items.

Mobile phones
Old mobile phones can quickly start to build up at the back of drawers when you get an upgrade. Many people keep their old mobiles because they don’t know what else they can do with them. However, they can be recycled. Check your local recycling centre to see if they accept them.

Toothbrushes
Toothbrushes are one of the most common household items but consider recycling them rather than merely throwing them away. The plastic handle and the bristles can both be reused in a variety of ways

Fluorescent Light Bulbs 
It may be surprising that fluorescent light bulbs can be recycled but it's true. Some stores such as IKEA actively collect these bulbs for recycling so bear that in mind when you replace your bulbs in the future.

Sports Shoes
Sports shoes are made of a range of materials from plastic, cotton, nylon, metal and more. All sports shoes can be recycled so once you have no more need for them

Christmas Lights
Christmas Lights often end up in landfill once they start to lose their sparkle and no longer work. Rather than chucking them away in the rubbish, check your local recycling centre or online as some companies will accept your non-working lights and have them processed so that as much of the lights as possible can be recycled.

Although these items are recyclable, they may not be able to just be placed in your regular household bins. Once you realise what can be recycled, check what the best way to recycle the item is as they vary from product to product.

Recycling is an important part that we can all play to help protect the environment. So, next time you have a clear out of your house or taking the rubbish out to the bin, ensure you take a moment to ensure you are not missing out a chance to recycle and reduce your household waste. 
 
To find out more about how we can help you with your waste disposal and recycling needs, please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information. 

How to Tackle a Wardrobe Clear-out

Wardrobe ClearoutClearing out your wardrobe can be a daunting task, especially if you do not do it regularly. It is surprising how quickly rubbish can build up over the years. Here, we discuss how best to tackle a wardrobe clear-out, to make the task easier to finish, leaving you with a clutter-free wardrobe.  

Remove EVERYTHING 

Start by removing absolutely everything from your wardrobe. You may be shocked by how much stuff is crammed inside. You will not be able to successfully complete a clear out if you do not start with an empty wardrobe. Once everything has been taken out, give the inside of your wardrobe a quick clean. 

Make a recycling pile  

Start by separating the items you want to keep with those that you do not. Make sure you are brutal with this. If you have forgotten you owned it or haven't worn/used something for months, then it is probably a sign it is not worth keeping. Once you have a not wanted pile, organise this into what can be recycled and what can’t be. This is important as it will significantly reduce the amount of waste that will end up in a landfill. 

Send items to a clothing bank  

There are many clothing banks, especially at supermarkets. Donate what you think will be useful, ensuring you are not donating items that are of bad quality.  

Create a sell and swap pile  

From the remaining items, consider if there are any that you could potentially sell. A clear-out is an amazing opportunity to earn some extra money from the items you no longer want or need. Also, consider swapping items. Speak to your friends and organise a clothing swap party. This helps you get rid of your unwanted clothes and end up with something new that you will actually wear.  

Can you repair anything? 

You may stumble across items that are a bit worse for wear. Before you automatically go to chuck it away, ask yourself whether you can fix it? If the answer is no, can you use it for another function? This involves a bit of creative thinking but there any many ways to reuse unwanted items for a different purpose. 

Hire a skip  

Wardrobes do not just contain clothes. There is a myriad of waste and clutter that can end up being shoved into our wardrobes. Consider hiring a small skip when tackling your wardrobes. This is a great method of getting rid of all your rubbish in one go. The waste will be separated and recycled if possible, giving you peace of mind that you are reducing landfill waste as much as possible. It is also good if you do not have the time to separate the items into sell and donate piles. It also saves significant time on trips to the tip and recycling centres. 

Get organising  

Once you have gone through your “to throw” pile, you can get started on organising the stuff you are keeping. You should only have items that fit you well, that you wear regularly or recently and that you still like. There is no point keeping things for the sake of it. If you do not have a lot of wardrobe space, separate your clothes into Spring / Summer and Autumn / Winter. Place the out of season clothes at the back of the wardrobe or in vacuum-packed bags. This keeps the items you are not going to wear yet out of the way. Once the weather changes, swap them over. 

Keep on top of it  

Once you have done the clear-out it is important to keep on top of it. The first clear-out will always be the most time consuming and hard work. However, undertaking mini subsequent tidy ups will help ensure you do not need to repeat the process as much. 
 

It is important to tidy out your wardrobe on a regular basis. Not only is it a satisfying task once it is completed, but it also allows you to donate unwanted items, clear space and help keep the items left neat and improve their longevity. Here is a quick guide on how to achieve this and end up with a clean and tidy wardrobe.  
 

To find out more about how we can help you with your waste disposal and recycling needs, please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information. 

Easy Ways to Recycle at Home


Recycling at HomeIt can sometimes be overwhelming knowing what can and cannot be recycled, it can also be simple to make small changes that lead to a large decrease in household waste. Here, we share some easy ways to recycle at home. 

When gifting to others, avoid excess packaging and only use wrapping that can be recycled. There are also some inventive ways to wrap a present. For example, you can use a nice scarf to wrap it up as a beautiful, reusable alternative.

Reduce the amount of paper post you receive by going paperless. 

If you have a local milkman, why not try using them? Not only will you get fresh milk straight to your doorstep, but they will also remove the glass bottles for you and you know the materials are reusable so waste is kept a minimum. 

When buying electrical items for outdoors try and opt for solar options instead of battery ran.

Grow your own vegetables and fruit in your own garden. It doesn't matter if you only have a small garden or balcony as some fruit and plants can still grow well in containers or on windowsills. 

Compost when possible. Compost bins are a great place to store your garden waste, vegetable peelings, cardboard, shredded paper and more.

If you have unwanted paper, use it as shopping lists or notepads first until it is full. Alternatively, shred your paper and use the shredding for compost, or stuffing for hampers.  

Stop using cling film and buy reusable covers instead. They act the same as cling film but they are less fiddly to use and do not cause any waste. 

Before you throw anything away stop and think if you can donate it. Furniture can even be donated and sometimes collected from your house, making it an easy thing to do.

There are many everyday items that you can repurpose. For example, clean out old jam jars or candles to repurpose them as storing other items.

If you need to print anything, always double side print, whenever you can, to cut down on paper and ink used.

Pack your lunch in reusable containers rather than using film or tin foil.

When having a clear-out, consider hiring a skip as this can ensure as much as your waste is being recycled as possible.

In your weekly shop, use reusable bags to store your fruit and veg and opt for loose versions to cut down on packaging. 

When buying cleaning products and hand soap among other things, buy refills rather than new products as this is a great way to cut down on packaging. 

Little and often can make a huge impact. By all of us doing our little bit we can significantly recycle more and cut down on waste. These are just some of the ways we can reuse, recycle and reduce waste. 

To find out more about how we can help you with your waste disposal and recycling needs, please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information. 

Tips for Garden Clear-Outs

Garden Shed
Whether you are completely re-landscaping your garden, getting a patio extension or merely having a tidy, using a skip to remove your garden waste can be really helpful. Here, we share some of our top tips on how to approach a garden clear- out and how to make the most of your skip hire.

Decide which is the best size of the skip

Before starting your garden clear out, decide on what exactly needs to be done. This will give you an idea of what type of waste you will be producing but also how much. Once you know this, it will give you a better idea of which skip size is best. Smaller skips such as 4-yard, 6-yard or 8-yard are perfect for general garden clear-outs. By this, we mean cutting back hedges, clearing away weeds or digging up some turf for new flower beds etc. For more extension landscaping projects, you may want to consider hiring a 6-14 yard skip instead. Always go for a slightly larger skip than you predict you need, as you will be surprised how quickly the waste can build up.

Start composting

Although it requires a little bit of effort, composting can be really beneficial. Not only is compost great for your plants, but it will also reduce the amount of waste you are placing in your skip. It is a cost-effective and environmentally friendly way to use your garden waste.

Separate your waste

Unfortunately, not all garden waste is easily recyclable. Bearing this in mind, try and separate as much of your waste as possible. Although the contents of your skip will be sorted after it has been collected, it is always a good idea to have it separate from the outset. Recyclable green waste includes grass, weeds, leaves and small twigs. Other items such as large branches, garden furniture, bricks, soil, plant pots and more will fall under the category of general waste. Green waste tends to cost significantly less to dispose of then general mixed waste, so it makes sense to separate the waste where possible.

Specify what your skip hire requirements are

When booking your skip, state what type of waste you will be disposing of. This will allow you to be given the best skip for your needs. Before placing anything in a skip, ensure you check that it is allowed to go in it. Although the majority of garden waste is not a problem, certain items commonly found in sheds such as paint tins etc are classed as hazardous materials and will need to be disposed of separately.

Reduce the bulkiness of garden waste

To make the most of your skip hire, try to reduce the space your garden waste takes up in your skip by cutting up bulky items such as branches. Place leaves, weeds and grass cuttings in bags at the bottom of the skip. Then place heavier items, such as garden furniture on top as this will compress the garden waste and create more space. Having this approach will help you fit your waste into a smaller skip.

Get selling

Before hiring your skip, think about the different types of waste you are planning on getting rid of. Once your skip arrives, it can be tempting to just throw everything into it for convenience. However, you could be missing out on opportunities. Some items may be perfect for selling, allowing you to earn some extra money. Alternatively, some items will be perfect for upcycling. It just takes a bit of creativity and advance planning.

Have a plan of action

Before you start, ensure you have a plan of action. You need to know how much time your garden clearance will take. If you have no idea, then start by clearing a small section of your garden. Time how long this takes and then multiply it until you have a rough idea of how much the rest of the garden will take. It is important to be realistic about your working pace. It is unachievable to expect you to complete a large project quickly. You will need to ensure you factor in enough breaks.

If you have decided to hire a skip to remove your waste, ensure you know where the skip will be stored. Many people have theirs in their front garden, but if this is where your project is taking place, you will need to find an alternative location. If this is the street, then permits will also need to be obtained.

As you start to spend more time in the garden, inevitably you will need to undertake a clear-out. No matter whether it’s a small spruce up or a larger project, hiring a skip to remove your garden waste can be a real time-saver. Not only will it help get the job done more efficiently and quickly, but it will also save tedious and messy trips transporting your garden waste to the local recycling centre. We have shared just some of our top tips to help you get started on your garden projects.

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