Special bins for empty chemical containers are being used by Complete Weed Control franchisees across the UK as part of a safe disposal and recycling operation.
The Solway Bins are already used by 17 franchisees and by May next year all 48 will have them.
"We needed a disposal solution and after discussion with Scotts, we chose Solway Recycling's scheme," says Alan Abel, technical director of CWC. "Scotts generously helped fund the large, rigid bins, which sit under cover at depots."
Solway Recycling operates a nationwide service supplying bins and liners to all users of chemicals needing to comply with hazardous waste regulations. From their base in Dumfries, they arrange with their nationwide network of collection agents to collect the inner linings of the reinforced plastic bins when they're full.
The chemical containers are then taken to a recycling plant where the plastics are separated, shredded and granulated into quarter-inch chunks. These are then processed back into plastic products. The bins and liners themselves are made from recycled plastic.
"We're delighted to be working with Complete Weed Control," says Jim Muir, sales and development manager for Solway Recycling. "Our nationwide service for the farming community already ensures that chemical containers are safely recycled."
Solway Recycling was founded in 1992 by current managing director Roy Hiddleston who was then a farm contractor. He saw the need for a recycling scheme and started the company with Government backing. Solway (named after the Firth) now employs 14 staff in Dumfries and 30 others around the UK.
"Our franchisees are very happy with the bins," says Alan Abel, "and the customers are reassured to know that all chemical containers used on their property are disposed of in an environmentally-responsible way - and that they're recycled."
Alan was one of CWC's first franchisees starting with the company back in October 1982. "In 25 years we've come a long way," says Alan, "and with our diverse customer base requiring contractors who work to the highest standards of heath and safety, we're now trying to get all franchisees qualified in the BASIS (British Agrichemical Storage Inspection Scheme) Advanced Contractor Certification Scheme (BACCS).
"External inspectors will look at documentation and records, check operating systems in the field and liaise with customers to ensure that all herbicide applications have taken place in accordance with the specification and that our customers are satisfied with the work we've carried out."
"The BACCS scheme sets the benchmark that all contractors aspire to. It will be valuable for franchisees to have these qualifications and as a company we're continuing to demonstrate that we take our corporate responsibility for safety, welfare and the environment seriously."
Complete Weed Control's operatives work across the whole of the UK, including Northern Ireland.
Photo caption: Solway bin and liner scheme in use at one of CWC's depots
For further information about Complete Weed Control, please visit www.completeweedcontrol.co.uk
Solway Recycling has just won an environmental award for its 'Bin & Liner' scheme - more details at www.solwayrecycling.co.uk.