Whether you are in to accounting or not, one thing that almost all businesses have in common is the aim to not waste money. Whilst the aim shouldn’t be all about not wasting money, it has to be considered that waste itself can cost you money.
Depending on which industry your business is in and the types of materials you deal with, your policy on waste will most likely differ. Those in the food industry for example might have ethical or social reasons behind not creating excess waste (as well as monetary reasons too of course) whereas a company working with hazardous materials that create waste will have an environmental and legal obligation to treat the waste in a certain way – failure to comply with this can inflict serious financial penalties on the business.
Waste Doesn’t Have To Be Costly
It is true that waste collection is a huge industry so of course there is a cost associated with waste disposal. That being said, there are some fantastic examples of waste making a real difference and it could be argued that it brings more good than bad to a company when treated in the right way.
Customers want to see companies they deal with behaving in an ethical and environmentally friendly manner. This means that a lot of customers want to know what social and environmental impact their consumer choices are making. The fur trade is a perfect example of this and is one of the earlier examples of consumer conscience playing a big part in supply and demand.
These days, we hear a lot about our carbon footprint or how much plastic goes in landfill or even worse in our seas and oceans. The very fact that this is now a prominent issue on traditional media platforms as well as social media means that it is in the public eye and as a result businesses stand to lose out if they are not seen to be ‘doing their bit’.
A great example of waste done right is in the food industry. Major supermarkets such as Tesco and Aldi offer up their perishing produce to charitable groups, churches and societies aiming to feed the homeless or those in need. Not only does this improve the social and ethical appearance of the company but it goes some way to reducing their waste collection costs.
Make Waste Matter
Other than the impact on your bottom line, waste does matter. It is high up on the political agendas of EU countries and whether you deal with hazardous waste and have a legal obligation or whether as a business you could consider recycling or reducing your waste – there is opportunity for all business and households to improve their waste policies.
Waste is often the byproduct of the main product but by being creative and thinking a little outside the box, there has to be ways to improve the waste situation in the UK and beyond. By talking about this issue and tackling it head on then we are half way there to solving the problem… what can you do in your business and home to improve waste?
We’d love to hear from you.