Reusing resources smartly to make the world go round

Circular economy

As we move into an era characterised by a focus on sustainability, the reuse of materials is no longer limited to the so called “Green” organisations producing contemporary products out of recycled waste in order to satisfy the environmentally conscious consumer. Globally there is a growing understanding and awareness of the value of waste. Instead of a mere hassle, waste is being viewed as an important resource as part of the value chain. Indeed, the shift from considering waste management as a cost saving exercise to a value-add to the bottom line is slowly infiltrating strategic business thinking worldwide.This new approach requires ‘re-thinking’ waste as an integral component of a supply chain. SmartMatta, a division of Barloworld Logistics believes that this is a positive development cycle that preserves and enhances natural capital, optimises resource yields and minimises system risks. It is often referred to as a ‘circular economy’ - which optimises the value of resources, energy and labour that go into a product. In simple terms a circular economy is formed when a product at the end of its life, is reused in the production of another.

At Barloworld Logistics we are passionate about sustainable business practice, and our teams at SmartMatta partner with clients to transform waste into viable resources through innovative zero-waste to landfill solutions such as anaerobic digestion facilities, wash plants, buying and selling, refurbishment and remanufacturing in order to create circular systems within and between various industries. The application of circular design thinking to waste management operations (and subsequently to various areas within the supply chain) has the potential to add long-term business advantage.

“If we would build an economy that would use things rather than use them up, we could build a future” Ellen MacArthur

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation is a global thought leader in establishing the circular economy as a strategic imperative for decision makers across business, government and academia. The below video from the Foundation views the economy through the eyes of a circular process to show just how business can and should evolve to reimagine the use of finite resources in a way that not only benefits our planet, but uses waste to build capital rather than reduce it.

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