Does our business model generate waste or excess resources that can be reduced or eliminated? How can we redesign our products and services to prevent negative externalities? How can we facilitate consumption that utilize surplus capacity in existing products and services?
At Slettvoll we are looking at possible ways of upcycling, resource utilization and reducing our waste and surplus resources. In addition, we are working on more environmentally friendly packaging, and reducing negative impact by redesigning products and services.
We are working on how to optimize our resource utilization and are planning to collaborate with another company to reduce textile waste. Our plan is to send the excess textiles to a Danish company called Really. They upcycle textiles that would normally go to waste and resell them. Today, excess textiles represent a cost, but by finding others that can make use of our waste, we will lower these costs as well as reducing waste and surplus resources.
Slettvoll have started mapping out the packaging of plastic and cardboards, and already use 50 % recycled cardboard. In addition, we have replaced the bubble wraps with clear plastic resulting in both reduction of costs and nearly 50% less usage of plastic. We are also working on “packaging in return”. These can be placed on pallets, collected, and sent back to the factory. By marking them with “reusable boxes”, it will also help communicating our sustainability efforts to our customers. The goal is to reduce waste and emission, as well as costs.
Another initiative is environmental smart packaging. A possibility is to make a reusable furniture pram package, for delivering and retrieving furniture. The reuse will result in less waste of resources, easier transportation and improved HSE for the transporters.
With regards to redesigning products and services to prevent negative impacts on externalities, our company has become certified in measuring Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs). Calculating an EPD, means calculating all components to a product, measuring transport, what types of components are used, the environment- and CO2 imprint these components have, and find the total environmental impact of the furniture. By mapping our components and identify the ones with the highest CO2 imprint we can replace them. For example, make use of more recycled materials, like recycled plastic and wood. In the beginning the EPDs can be used to map out the current position. However, gradually, as we calculate and launch more products, we can use it actively to develop products that are more environmentally friendly.