Parker Merchanting is helping the Midas Group deal with the complexities of reusing and recycling in the construction industry with a partnership that will contribute to the company’s target of reducing waste generated on its construction sites by 20% by 2015.

Construction and demolition waste generation accounts for 35% of total UK waste production. Under the Revised Waste Framework Directive, 70% of all construction and demolition waste must be recycled or recovered by 2020 and with legislation such as WRAP and WEEE, more companies need to place greater emphasis on reusing and recycling as part of their sustainability strategies.

Midas is tackling the issue head-on with its ‘7 Steps to Sustainability’, a strategic initiative which not only targets waste management but also covers carbon reduction, sustainable procurement, respecting natural resources, community engagement, training and development and communication.

With recycling one of the most effective ways for the construction industry to improve its impact on the natural environment, Midas challenged Parker Merchanting to look at how it could help reduce the total volume of waste, both to site in the first instance and then to landfill to help support Midas Group’s three year sustainability plan.

Parker supplies Midas with its spectrum of PPE, workwear and consumables on a sole supplier basis. Wherever possible, Parker Merchanting is reusing its branded packaging so boxes are collected from the site when the next delivery is dropped off. To ensure this works, site staff break the boxes down in a particular way so they can be flat-packed and reused along with pallets. In addition, to reduce the use of cardboard boxes in the first instance, Parker uses lightweight steel cages for items that can be bundled loose rather than using individual packaging.

Julian Kingswood from Parker Merchanting explained, “Waste management has a number of complex requirements, mainly driven by legislation such as the WEEE Directive. It is vital that organisations requiring waste management check the credentials of the recycling contractor to ensure they adhere to environmental best practice recycling as much as possible. This is something we check on an annual basis with our safety audits, for our and customers’ peace of mind.”

Steve Russell, Midas’ sustainability and procurement director added, “A number of our sites across the south west and Wales have started using the waste collection service provided by Parkers, which supports the waste management element in our ‘7 Steps to Sustainability’. The group’s three year Sustainability Plan targets improvements in waste reduction as well as recycling so we will be looking to work with our suppliers to introduce further initiatives to reduce packaging waste as well as recycling it.”