Even in a Pandemic the Show Must Go On…

And we were so pleased to sponsor the first Virtual LARAC Conference 2020.

The organisation and support during the event was immense and hopefully you were all able to get that conference feeling too! And although we weren’t able to manage the usual drinks and awards evening the two-day affair left us with a sentiment of togetherness at a time when our social interactions are so limited.

There were so many highlights for me from the packed two-day programme, here are a few for me;

Day 1 COMMUNICATIONS WORKSHOP by Creative Concerns - using engaging methodology and including as many people as possible in the creative process. This should be a key part of any organisation’s strategy and in this new age of online technology the digitisation of communications can give you a truly effective approach. Social media is a fantastic platform for engaging with your audience in a meaningful and effective way. The statistics speak for themselves, with approximately 44 million users in the UK on Facebook, this is the place to be. Diversifying your content and creating distinct pages for individual campaigns will give visitors a reason to engage.

Day 2 ACHIEVING THE HIGHEST UK RECYCLING RATE was extremely insightful. The East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s case study proves that there is light at the end of the tunnel.

We have been working with local authorities and county councils for over 25 years, in this time we have seen the needs of those we support change hugely.

We all know we need to recycle, but knowing what, how and why is difficult to understand and more prompting cues are being adopted in order to continue improvements in recycling rates.

Reducing contamination especially in textiles continues to be a challenge and utilising innovative ways of communicating to promote correct segregation of waste streams is key.

Continual up-keep of the bin housing areas, ensuring that your bins are regularly refurbished and the signage is renewed each time can help with making the messaging clear.

Waste management in high density and high-rise communities is also demanding and providing communal bins with larger capacities such as the Paladin model can reduce unsightly overflowing.

The other area to focus is the lid of your container fleet. There are many styles of recycling lids on offer now including reversible lids, lids with open apertures, openings covered with brushes or plastic flaps, lid in a lid and steel lids.

The overriding results show that when specialist recycling features are used it can lead to better recycling rates.

We recently worked with Wealden District Council in partnership with Biffa to fully refurbish their steel wheelie bins and fitted reversible lids.

They tweeted: Looking good! Thanks to @Biffafor organising the refurbishment of our recycling point bins. The reverse lid design and new clearer signage showing the materials we accept will help to reduce contamination = more recycling! #ReduceReuseRecycle

Day 2 - RAMPING UP REUSE workshop was a distinctive approach for residents wanting to declutter household objects but may have not thought of putting them aside for reuse before.

The success of this scheme can be attributed to many factors but, it is clear that people always relate better with local known brands where the end result is a benefit to the community or supporting a charitable cause. Pushing reuse potentially through charity partners has good traction as seen in this example.

Our Textile and Recycling Division has been providing transport and refurbishment services for charities since 2014. Charity retail is a strong sector providing consumers the opportunity to buy second hand products whilst contributing to good causes and although lockdown has seen the forced closing of their shops, they are well placed to help councils to drive the reuse mission in the future.

Hope you all enjoyed the event as much as we did and here’s to Birmingham in 2021!

Fairport Containers

Details of all the workshops can be found here

The opinions expressed in this blog belong to the blogger and are not necessarily those of LARAC