Ecover was established in 1979 after seeing the damage to waterways and aquatic life caused by phosphates and other cleaning chemicals, a bunch of Belgian scientists decide to find a cleaner way. Starting from a tiny shed, they developed a bold new phosphate-free formula and launched Ecover. The Ecover factory was built in 1992 with ecological design at the forefront. The facility was made using over 90% recycled or renewable materials. With reclaimed wooden beams and strengthened European pine instead of steel and concrete. And special low energy ‘eco’ bricks for the walls. We also planted a living green roof that helps with insulation and blends in naturally with the local environment. When it comes to its environmental impact, we wanted the TRUE Zero Waste certification as verification of this from a Waste Management prospective. The Ecover team worked hard to achieve platinum level certification because Environmental Impact is at the forefront of decisions at Ecover.
Key Achievements included:
- The team redesigned the bin layout of the factory and ensured collections of waste by external contractors was optimal to avoid unnecessary waste pickups.
- Reduction of waste at the factory we have moved to bulk storage of raw materials and reusable drums to avoid excessive packaging use.
- Implemented a composting system to ensure that all food and garden waste is converted into usable compost which returns onto site as new compost – through partnering with a local expert we can ensure our compost is circular and the most is made from our waste resources.
- The Leadership team review waste management performance on a quarterly basis and the data and insights are communicated at a company level.
At Ecover we already had a high diversion rate of waste from Landfill and Incineration, but we wanted a certification which reflected the whole life cycle of waste Management. The TRUE Zero Waste certification provided the best framework to achieve both an increased in diversion rates and bring a more holistic approach to Waste Management. Ecover employees have been engaged in the project implementing changes and reinforcing the culture of reduction of waste as key to the Ecover factory.