kinder & co looking to the future with component recycling
For more than 50 years, many products, both consumer and industrial, have been made from some type of plastic. Its physical and chemical properties give it versatility in countless applications, with new uses for plastic appearing almost daily.
In industrial applications, the strength and versatility of plastics has lead to its use in areas where steel has been more traditionally used. One such industry that is seeing the ever-growing use of plastics because of what can be a particularly aggressive environment, is the Bulk Materials Handling Industry. A typical example of this, is the K-Polymer range of Conveyor Rollers offered by Victoria based Kinder and Co. which are manufactured from high density polyethylene (HDPE), or their range of Elevator Buckets, manufactured from the same type of composite material.
There is no doubting the benefits that these materials offer the Bulk Materials Handling Industry. The K-Polymer conveyor rollers for example, when compared to steel rollers are 50% lighter, less aggressive on the belt, quieter, resistant to wear and wont rust, yet they maintain a competitive price advantage over their traditional steel counterparts.
But with the growing use of plastics across all industrial sectors, comes the issue of its disposal at the end of its useful life. Unlike for homeowners, there are few collection schemes in place by local government, to deal with recycling post-industrial plastics waste. Consequently, far too much industrial plastic waste ends up in landfill tips, where it can take up to 400 years to break down!
In today’s environmentally conscious society, increasing pressure is being placed on industry to put controls in place to protect the environment. However, unlike the legislation that is in place for such things as atmospheric emissions, or water and land pollutants, the disposal of recyclable materials is pretty much self-policing.
So in what is believed to be an industry first, Kinder and Co are taking the responsible approach once plastic components supplied by the company, come to the end of their life cycle. This “cradleto-cradle” solution prevents Kinder plastic conveyor components from ending up on a landfill tip.
By arrangement, clean and palletised components, which were previously supplied by the company, can be returned for recycling. These plastic components then end up as pallets, shipping dunnage or fence posts, which of course adds the further environmental benefit of conserving timber!
Instead of paying to dispose of this waste in landfill, it makes much better business sense to recycle. The environmental benefits of recycling are undisputable and the economic benefits are clear. Although future changes in legislation are almost certain to force industry to take a more responsible approach to this issue, organisations voluntarily involved in recycling post-industrial plastics waste now, are less likely to come under attack for poor environmental performance.
Neil Kinder, Managing Director of Kinder & Co. said “with this scheme, we are taking a responsible approach to environmental leadership and in conjunction with our customers looking towards the future”.
Although this unique approach has only just been introduced, the company already has customers who have collection points in place on site, ready for when they next replace these components.