Sonoco's wire and cable reels division offers waste reduction consulting service

April 24, 2008
April 24, 2008 -- The company says its Sonoco Sustainability Solutions (S3) service helps manufacturers and distributors of wire and cable identify ways to reduce waste materials going to landfills by finding alternative uses for a facility's previously unrecycled wastes.

April 24, 2008 -- Sonoco's Wire and Cable Reels division has begun offering a sustainability consulting service designed to result in productivity savings for manufacturers and distributors of wire and cable, and their customers. The company says its Sonoco Sustainability Solutions (S3) service identifies ways to reduce waste materials going to landfills by finding alternative uses for a facility's previously unrecycled wastes. The company maintains that the program can increase profitability "by converting waste streams into revenue streams."

S3 is a service of Sonoco's recycling division, Sonoco Recycling, which serves the packaging industry. Through the program, Sonoco's waste reduction experts audit a customer's location to review its existing waste handling practices. A tailored program is then developed to provide significant savings by reducing waste hauling charges and landfill fees. The company says the service can also provide incremental income through the sale of previously landfilled materials, and by finding alternate uses for certain wastes. Finally, the service reports productivity improvements in both financial savings and environmental benefits.

"S3 initially was developed to improve the productivity of Sonoco plants by reducing waste materials going to landfill," comments Randy Lusk, general manager, Sonoco Wire and Cable Reels. "We were so pleased with the results that we experimented and partnered with some customers' locations. The result was that this service provided significant productivity savings, along with new revenue sources and environmental benefits."

Wire and cable manufacturer Southwire (Carrollton, GA) recently signed on as an S3 customer, according to Cynthia Brooks, the manufacturer's Green Initiatives manager. "The goal of S3 is zero landfill waste," says Brooks. "We're really looking forward to identifying ways we can reduce our landfill waste, help the environment, and possibly even positively impact our top line. This is a really exciting opportunity for creating value by enhancing our current processes."

Myles Cohen, vice president and general manager of Sonoco Recycling, allows that most wire and cable manufacturers have active recycling programs, but can identify additional recycling opportunities through S3. "Because Sonoco has an extensive knowledge of the industrial and consumer packaging industries, and expertise in recycling, we can find alternative recycling methods for wastes previously believed unrecyclable, such as plastic banding, bulk plastic liners and sacks, flexible packaging and other materials," maintains Cohen. "Our S3 team is pleased to apply its skills in this area to the wire and cable manufacturing industry. It's a natural extension of what has been a remarkably successful program in just a short time."

Sonoco claims that, in 2007, its Wire and Cable Reels division's reel recycling program helped North American wire and cable manufacturers and distributors save approximately 50,000 trees and $6 million in disposal costs by recycling 150,000 wire and cable reels for 1,200 customers in 641 cities in the contiguous United States and Canada.

A video overview of Sonoco's S3 service can be viewed here.

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