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Materials efficiency for business

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While most businesses understand the potential savings from using energy more efficiently, many businesses are unaware of the opportunities for even greater savings by using materials more efficiently.

For most businesses material costs are the second biggest business expense after labour – and for many manufacturers it is the biggest expense. Material costs account for 30% to 80% of the cost of making a product.

Materials efficiency is about doing more with less and ultimately saving money. It means producing a product or service using less input materials or producing more product or service for the same amount of material.

There are many actions that businesses can take to improve materials efficiency ranging from process or systems changes to reduce wastage or improve productivity; through changing how input materials are measured and loaded; to redesigning products and services so they use less material to make. Wasted or unused materials is lost revenue. Simply put, it’s money down the drain.

There are many ways to improve materials efficiency by as much as 20 to 50%, and these savings can be achieved in less than two years.

Operations in the waste industry

Process optimisation

The objective of process optimisation is to reduce process cycle times, reduce wastage, improve the quality of products or services, and reduce costs.

Learn more about process optimization


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Materials efficiency best practice

Resources to help businesses take simple actions to reduce material use and wastes generated, including all the information a business need to conduct a Waste Wise audit.

View the Best practice guides