Tarkett has long been a pioneer in the flooring industry, leading the field in developing truly sustainable flooring solutions, alongside recycling initiatives that began over 50 years ago in 1957. Today, Tarkett continues to put sustainability at the heart of all its operations. Following a recent review at their factory in Lenham, Kent, it was decided to overhaul the companys waste management policies with a view to minimising the amount of waste sent to landfill.
David Jenner, Production Director at Tarkett comments: Prior to the changes, we were only recycling cardboard and paper. We were dealing with four or five different waste management companies at a time, our recycling rates were low, costs were high and our audit trail for waste wasnt what we wanted it to be.
Working in partnership with Countrystyle, a local waste management company, Tarkett have now successfully reduced their landfill rates down to almost zero. This has been achieved with the introduction of clear waste streams in a designated waste handling area. All tipping skip equipment is painted in colour code to align with the waste streams using 6 different designs to denote each one. Large signs in the waste handling area help clarify appropriate contents, while mini signs have also been added to individual skips to reinforce the whole communication.
Since the changeover our landfill rate has been reduced to a minimal level, explained David. We have full accountability for all waste streams through Countrystyles online reporting system and our day-to-day recycling operations are simplified by having one dedicated Account Manager on call.
Proper segregation of waste at source is essential when processing a wide range of waste streams on site, making staff training vital to the schemes success. This was provided by Countrystyle, supported by Tarketts management team. Neil Coultrip, Planning Controller for Tarkett noted: The training of our operatives has been an essential part of the programme. By engaging staff from the outset we have set the right foundations for the future.
Tarketts approach to sustainability is called Balanced Choice. This focuses not only on the products themselves, but also on their manufacture, lifetime performance and end-of-life. Resource stewardship and recycling are two key elements of this and the achievement of zero waste to landfill is testament to the companys commitment in these areas.