Better Places > Case Studies > Taking Climate Action! With First Mile

Taking Climate Action! With First Mile

09 March 2023

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Project Overview

Regular Cleaning and First Mile have a lot of shared values when it comes to sustainability goals and environmentally friendly practices, which is what makes us the perfect partners.
When we approached First Mile about this bottle recycling project, they were more than happy to help. First Mile love nothing more than providing their clients with innovative solutions that not only help the environment but can also save them money! Providing their partners with clever recycling solutions can serve as a way to inform and educate other businesses about how they can think outside the box to improve their sustainability and handle their waste in a more eco-friendly way.

The Challenge

As part of our Better Places sustainable business strategy, we have committed to take climate action, aiming to achieve NetZeroby30. As a result, we have moved to new more sustainable products changing the way we operate. When we switched to a new cleaning product this produced some new challenges. For one, thousands of empty product spray bottles made redundant by a more sustainable solution.

Spray bottles are notoriously difficult to be recycled due to their complex make up as they usually have over 9 different components of plastics and metal.

We contacted First Mile in search of an innovative solution which could support our aim of taking climate action through diverting waste to landfill, part of our ‘Protecting Our World’ strand of our Better Places strategy. It was because of this that it was important we found a business that could effectively recycle each part of the bottle.

The Solution

First Mile identified the best solution as bottle recycling in a way that ensured all the materials were being consciously processed and used to produce other products, therefore contributing to the circular economy and reducing carbon emissions.

The perfect solution lay in a small retail shop less than 10 miles from where the bottles were stored at our head office.

‘Are You Mad’ is the world’s first high street plastic recycling studio, based on Carnaby Street, in London. Here, the bottles were dismantled, and each plastic element shredded so it could then be recycled and made into new plastic products.

The End Result

A real positive in taking action on climate and waste, a reduction in carbon emissions and delivering social value, by providing our waste for someone else’s use.

What were once spray bottles were ultimately cleaned, shredded, melted and turned into new plastic products such as tables and chairs, place mats and mirrors, and a range of other products which are now for sale at the Are You Mad store.

The bottles were shredded on site in London, which means the journey was less than 8 miles in total from collection to recycling meaning carbon production due to transport was kept to a minimum.

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