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Reusable The survival of the fittest

Reusable! Easy to say, may not be easy to do. ‘Reusable’ can demand durability and recognisability for returns, clean-ability to go back to clean to clean production areas and an economic lifetime cost. Worse! With recycling, containers may have a tough time. Darwin-like, it’s ‘the survival of the fittest’. We look at two recycling case studies.

Case study 1: Long-life Pallet Box Value in Harsh Abattoir Use

The Bristol-based Chew Valley Hide & Skin Company uses bespoke plastic pallet boxes to take 9000 tonnes of raw animal bi-products from abattoirs every year. Chew Valley searched for suppliers and settled on a bespoke Dolav. It is DEFRA approved.

The Dolavs survive very harsh conditions and are often hit by the forklift truck forks when off-site. "With the density of the plastic, they stand up well and we can repair them. They serve us very well," said director, Lindsay Dury. His Dolavs, with sides extended to 1140 mm, take a double-load of up to 1000 kilos. They have a central stainless-steel runner to give extra strength and support especially when inverted with a rotating forklift clamp.

"We power-hose them after use and they clean up very well," said Mr Dury. He recently took delivery of even more plastic pallet boxes from Dolav UK and has 60 Dolavs on 14 abattoir sites with each returning full to Chew Valley about five times a week.

Case study 2: Paper recycling
Keeble recycles paper mainly from printers, sorts it and every year exports 50,000 tonnes to paper mills. Red plastic pallet boxes, the Dolavs, are left at around 200 of Keeble’s customers within 100-miles. They are collected when full and empty red Dolavs are left to be refilled.

Keeble has more than 2000 pallet boxes with most on customer sites and only about 200 back at the Rainham base being processed. Daniel Keeble said, "We changed from metal containers to plastic because they don’t need welding or repainting and they are easy to wash clean." Daniel said he bought the Ace Dolav for its three strong integral runners, quality and colour choice. His bespoke Dolavs have a perforated base for drainage. He wants a long life from them.

To give customers a direct-from-manufacture advantage and improved opportunities for customised products, Dolav has set up UK and Irish offices and stocked warehouses in Corby and Dublin. Its new introduction, the Ace Dolav, is a premium product designed for hygiene. With rounded internal corners this new reusable plastic pallet box is easily steam cleaned and with three integrated runners its sturdiness sets it up for a long life span. The Ace Dolav stacks to 8-high to 5000 Kg.

Many Dolav customers select bi-colour Dolavs as reusable pallet boxes. The two colours are added during injection moulding in a process unique to Dolav which makes the colours permanent and allows a thicker gauge and stronger product. With six, off-the-shelf colour pairs and client logo, each pallet box is easy to identify for return for reuse. More: www.dolav-uk.co.uk

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