A series of feasibility and demonstration trials for the collection of material for recycling from Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) throughout the country have clearly shown that businesses can recycle effectively, regardless of their size, location or specific requirements.
Initial feasibility trials for SME recycling
This evaluation report brings together and evaluates the findings from a series of feasibility trials and draws conclusions that can be used by recycling service providers in the development and expansion of recycling services for small to medium enterprises.
Schemes operated by First Mile in London and Mid Devon Community Recycling (MDCR) in Exeter, which ran from January to June 2007, were among 13 feasibility trials supported by WRAP.
Executive summary of the independent evaluation of the SME004 feasibility trials to provide recycling services to SMEs. The trials were focussed on food waste collections, services for SMEs in the construction, demolition and refurbishment sector, and SMEs on industrial estates and business parks. Download the report on the feasibility trials.
As a result, Bryson Recycling of Belfast, Stockport Waste Management and North East Recycling Ltd were among a further 14 companies to take part in demonstration trials from March to August 2007.
These trials tested the good practice models for multi-material recycling services, container glass collections from SMEs and services for SMEs located in city-centres. Download the report on the demonstration trials.
Breaking down the barriers
Whether in a large city such as London or a more rural area like Devon, smaller businesses need services which are tailor made for their needs, including being easy to join and set up within their organisation, regular collections to minimise the amount of storage space needed and costing less or no more than general rubbish collection schemes.
Many of the SMEs which took advantage of the services provided during the feasibility and demonstration trials commented to the trial partners that they were surprised at how easy and cost effective it was for them to recycle – many were under the impression that recycling would be costly, time consuming and inconvenient which were real barriers stopping them from looking into recycling their waste. In many cases, recycling can actually be more cost effective than general waste disposal services they may have been using previously.
These trials have shown that SMEs need an appropriate infrastructure in place which meets their specific requirements in order to facilitate recycling. The numbers of SMEs joining each scheme has proven that they are willing to recycle and are keen to reduce their impact on the environment and the amount of waste they are sending to landfill.
View the details of the trials: