Every day is an education

They say every day is an education and that’s never been truer when you work in the waste industry.

I started August receiving some commodity training from Yorwaste’s lovely Commodities Manager Wayne Cox, It’s Wayne’s job to sell the recycling we collect and process on the commodities markets, ensuring we get the best price possible.

To do this, the recycling we collect needs to be of the highest quality so that means ensuring materials are separated and sorted properly.

When it comes to materials like glass, aluminium, steel and paper that’s easy enough, but it’s a whole new kettle of fish when it comes to plastic. There are seven types of plastic and this time around, I was reinforcing my knowledge by looking at PP and PS (that is milk jugs and veg / fruit trays to you and me!).

Getting hands-on, we sifted through the plastic material that comes into our sites and I learned about the different grades of soft and hard plastic. As a rule, it is soft plastics like plastic milk and drinks bottles that can be recycled, whilst film grade plastics like cling-film and shopping bags should go in the general waste bin.

So, by the end of the session, I knew my HDPE from my PET, but don’t me get started on the LDPE or PP!

I also carried out risk assessments at two North Yorkshire County Council sites and continued to visit customers in beautiful places such as Leyburn, Bainbridge and Bedale (it’s a hard life working in this county I can tell you!).

I was kept busy as ever in York, including attending a York Chamber of Commerce event in the city’s Principal Hotel. This is a great opportunity for networking and to touch base with many of my clients who are members of the Chamber. It’s also a good opportunity to answer the gazillion questions from Chamber Members about waste and recycling, certainly keeps me busy!

I also had time to plan for two big events happening in September, the Women of Waste and Bin to Bulb initiatives in which I lead on, but more on those next month.

Oh, and I did also manage a bit of downtime by spending some quality time in the Lake District, which was very relaxing – I needed it after my plastic education!

See you in September.


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