Homebuilders collaborate for packaging waste project

THREE of the UK’s largest homebuilders are collaborating to tackle the problem of packaging waste in the homebuilding sector.

Barratt Developments, Bellway and Taylor Wimpey will work alongside Supply Chain Sustainability School and Zero Waste Scotland in the initiative.

The project will apply learning from the retail sector by researching packaging waste at its manufacturing and supply sources, rather than the traditional way of examining waste streams in the skip.

Supply Chain Sustainability School said that research shows that most dry mixed recyclable waste across the built environment is packaging. With the new plastic packaging tax set to rise to £200 per tonne in April 2022, the project will seek to gain a detailed understanding of packaging flows from a combined list of the three housebuilders’ top 50 suppliers.

The organisation added that by establishing the size of the problem, the project will guide those who work with suppliers to reduce waste – and ‘most importantly’, move to a circular rather than linear economy.

Considerations will include where to reduce waste at source; new ways and materials to transport materials to sites safely and securely; increasing recycled content within packaging; and re-using or recycling more packaging materials.

Stephen Boyle, construction Spokesperson for Zero Waste Scotland, said, “I’m delighted that three of the industry’s leading homebuilders have come together. By collaborating we will be able to tackle this problem quicker and more effectively than by taking individual actions. All of us are faced with tougher legal requirements and increased producer responsibilities, but importantly, as consumers we no longer accept the environmental cost of packaging waste.

“The data collected will be used to help develop a constructive dialogue with suppliers, manufacturers, home builders and waste contractors aimed at helping us all to tackle this significant problem.”