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Helping customers achieve 'closed loop' recycling

Published 13th January, 2014 by Neil Nixon

Helping customers achieve 'closed loop' recycling

Kimberly-Clark Professional is embarking on a drive to help its customers better understand the concept of 'closed loop recycling' and how it can help them to minimise their impact on the environment.

Closed loop recycling is a production system in which the waste generated by one product is used to make another. A typical example would be the recovery of fibre from recycled office waste paper to be used in the production of towel and tissue products. Kimberly-Clark Professional can help customers calculate the amount of waste paper they need to recycle in order to recover enough fibre to manufacture the towel and tissue products they consume.

Lori Shaffer, sustainability marketing manager at Kimberly-Clark Professional, said: “We share our customers' concerns about the post-consumer waste generated by the products we supply them with. Many of our customers are already able to recycle enough office waste paper to produce the tissue products they consume, thereby creating a closed loop. Where our customers are not able to achieve this closed loop, we want to help them do so. In an ideal world, we would recycle their waste for them. But in many cases it's not realistic for us to do this, so offering practical support is the next best solution. There are a number of ways we can help. For example, it might be the case that a change in product mix - a switch to products that are more effective and therefore reduce consumption levels - could be the answer. Simply looking afresh at the products a customer purchases from us could help them to close the loop - and at the same time reduce their cost-in-use.”

Kimberly-Clark Professional is also stepping up efforts to help its customers educate their employees about recycling and disposing of their waste in a more environmentally friendly fashion. The company is offering subsidised Kimberly-Clark Paper Saver waste paper collection bins, which are designed to store recyclable paper waste for collection and reprocessing.

Initiatives like these, which enable customers to reduce the impact of their paper waste streams, are an extension of the actions being taken by Kimberly-Clark to reduce its own waste generation.

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