Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!
As more and more consumers buy more and more products the amount of packaging waste is ever increasing. Companies who truly believe in a sustainable business model – such as The Coca-Cola Company – are looking at ways to reduce this waste and ensure that it does not end up as landfill. In Djibouti, the capital of the Republic of Djibouti, approximately four tons of PVC, 40 tons of PET and 18 tons of aluminum can waste is added to the market every month.
In an attempt to reduce this, Ets Coubèche SARL, the Coca-Cola Bottler in Djibouti, has established a collection and recycling program.
Recycling bins have been placed in the parking lots of two supermarkets, in schools, at an animal refuge centre, at hotels and at the local US Army base.
Says Christophe Chenot, Operational Marketing Manager, Ets Coubèche SARL: "With the increase in population in the country and the change in consumer behavior that favors convenience, the amount of waste is set to increase even further. As a company we feel that we have a collective responsibility to assist in the recovery and recycling of this waste."
A four-step solution
The ultimate objective of the project is to be able to collect all of the empty bottles and cans from the general market and then to grind up the used Coca-Cola PVC bottles for use in other applications or to bundle the aluminum cans so they can be exported for further recycling.
The approach that the company has taken follows four simple steps: collection and sorting of the materials from the market; transportation to the recycling center; bundling or grinding of the material; and the export of this baled or ground material.
Not surprisingly the community response to this initiative has been positive. "The US Army base is very happy that we have been able to offer them a solution to their recycling needs," says Christophe.
A local newspaper also picked up the story and ran an article about the work of Ets Coubèche SARL.
- Ets Coubeche SARL has established one collection center at its factory for both aluminum and PET.
- Dedicated waste bins for PET, aluminum and PVC ensure sorting is done at the collection points.
- Each of the rectangular branded bins are fitted with a removable net and the contents are collected once or twice a week.
- The PVC grinding project has been running for the past eight years. The machine can grind 24 bails of 45kg per bail per eight hour day. The ground PVC product is exported to Yemeni.
- The PET and aluminum collection project was only started this year. Initially the PVC crowns are manually separated from the PET bottles and then they are bundled ready for export. The PET machine can handle 16 bails of 90kg per bail per day (one PET bail contains about 1,200 bottles). The aluminum machine handles 16 bails of 120kg per bail (about 2,500 cans) per day. The bailed aluminum and PET is then sent to Dubai.