Open and Closed Loop Recycling
Open-loop recycling is where the recycled materials are converted into both new raw material and waste product typically in the manufacturing sector. This usually involves processing various types of product of similar material make-up and changes the properties of the material itself often through heat, chemical reactions, or crushing. Open-loop recycling is often referred to as ‘down-cycling’ as each time a product is recycled it degrades the material.
Closed-loop recycling is focused on supply chain sustainability. It is a process where waste is collected, recycled and used to make new products which are the same as before. It is common in specialised industries such as Computing which use complex parts that cannot easily be broken down post-consumption into individual materials. Closed-loop recycling focuses on bringing the products back to the manufacturer so that they can be reused or refurbished without a loss of material.
Wherever possible, we work with our customers to achieve an open or closed loop philosophy within their business thus achieving a circular economy model. Open and closed loop recycling is important for a number of reasons:
- Protecting natural resources – the less raw materials we use the less negative impact we have on our planet.
- Minimising harm to the environment such as wildlife.
- Reducing pollution.