MAKING RECYCLING MORE REWARDING AND EFFICIENT
In some economies, people make a living from collecting materials for recycling. It can be a highly efficient system for encouraging collection and recycling of many material types. However, in markets such as the Philippines and Indonesia, there are fewer incentives for people to collect and return flexible packaging – such as wrappers, sachets, pouches and stick pack waste – which have little, or no, monetary value compared to other materials. If the material is not collected, it gets mixed up with other waste types, making it even harder to recover without complex and expensive sorting. As recycling is a global responsibility for Nestlé, increasing recovery rates of flexible packaging is a special challenge that needs to be solved to give the material value as a resource.
We are looking for a device or system that will drive the collection and recovery of flexible packaging materials. The solution will encourage collection and responsible disposal of clean used packaging materials through incentivisation of the community. The device will also recognise and separate different flexible packaging types to ensure cleaner and higher value recyclates for Nestlé brands that utilise flexible packaging. These are brands such as Milo, Nescafé, Bear and Maggi.
The device we want to help develop would function as a collector but will also store flexible packaging waste efficiently through, for instance, compaction. Designed for residential estates, offices, schools, retail stores and public areas, it should enable easy disposal and compression of wrappers, sachets, pouches and stick pack waste. It should also recognise, segregate and store the waste with minimal bulk so it is ready for transport.
The device should leverage new technology to identify and monetise the returned packaging. It should also incentivise the consumer or waste collector with digital payment or other reward. Ready for IoT (internet of Things) connectivity, the device should have the ability to collect data such as which packs are being returned, and how often. It should also enable remote monitoring of waste levels to facilitate efficient collection patterns that Nestlé can utilize to create brand stories.
Currently, we are looking at piloting the initiative in a key city such as Manila or Jakarta as well as a key resort area such as Boracay or Bali. We will test different incentives to understand how we can best reward consumers to drive recovery and encourage higher rates of recycling.
If you have any questions about this particular challenge, you can get in touch with Vivek here.
Why It Matters
Recycling is a responsibility for everyone on the planet. As a leading consumer brands company, Nestlé is 100% committed to doing everything it can to solve its challenges. We want to develop a device that removes all the possible barriers to recycling a material that has been difficult to recycle and give it a key role in modern economies and everyday life. All the knowledge gained from the project will be shared with brands and organisations outside Nestlé in the spirit of public/private partnership.
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