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Responsible waste management for a greener economy

As a business committed to sustainability and the protection of our environment, the efficient management of our waste materials is one of First Impression Labels’ top priorities.

Poor waste management, widespread pollution and the rapid loss of landfill space have become major issues in South Africa and across the world. In light of this, the recycling and recyclability of food and goods packaging is a core concern. In order to protect our natural resources and develop sustainable economies, producers need to turn to greener, more responsible solutions to dead-end waste disposal.

To improve our on-site waste management systems, HCG group has recently installed new state-of-the-art equipment which has helped reduce our risk to landfill by 63% within just 3 months. The separation of the various waste streams at source has been key to the increased recycled rates and lower waste to landfill. Together with our customers, we are also helping to develop more recyclable-friendly products that will make the recycling process smoother and more effective.

At an industry level, FIL has joined Polyco and Fibre Circle, two leading Producer Responsibility Organisations (PROs) for the efficient management of plastic and paper waste respectively. These organisations drive the recovery of packaging materials at end-of-life for recycling or reuse on the journey towards zero waste to landfill and a circular economy.

We have also registered with the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and Environment (DFFE) to be part of the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) programme. This programme places the physical and financial responsibility of all goods and packaging on the producer. This means the onus is on manufacturers, importers, brand owners and retailers to effectively manage the entire lifecycle of any product they put into the South African market, including post-consumer waste collection, recycling and reuse or disposal.

With our new on-site waste management capabilities and by working together with our PROs and the EPR regulations, we have a solid framework for the successful implementation of recycling schemes that support the protection of our environment and develop the infrastructure for a viable and profitable circular economy.