How To Make Your Manufacturing Process Eco-Friendly
As awareness continues to heighten around the current state of the environment, going green in the manufacturing process is becoming increasingly common throughout the entire country. It isn’t only encouraged to help the planet, but it’s also monetarily beneficial to do so. From cost reduction to increased reputation to increased market opportunities, there are a variety of reasons why both businesses and warehouses are adopting more sustainable manufacturing practices. However, when new to the process, many of them have trouble knowing where to start. If you’re looking to embrace these benefits for yourself—here are a few tips on how to make your manufacturing process eco-friendly.
Factors that Contribute to Sustainable Manufacturing
While cutting the use of plastic silverware in the breakroom is one way to reduce the amount of environmental impact your warehouse has on the environment, it takes a few more significant changes to adjust an entire manufacturing process to the idea properly. After all, it’s often a lot simpler to stick with standards you already know will work and produce the products you want. However, making the switch to running green not only leaves you with more resources than before, but it also puts you in a high position to expand product lines.
1. Water Conservation
No matter what products you’re producing, any standard manufacturing process involves using water. Then, once used and contaminated by the manufacturing materials, it often goes into the sewers and back into the environment. Water is wasted each year as a product of manufacturing, so conserving as much as you can is a crucial first step in making the switch. If you’re unsure of how to make the most significant impact in this area, try reaching out to your local water company. They can assess your current water usage and point out a few areas where you can make changes.
2. Waste Reduction and Management
Along with wastewater, there are also solid waste materials left behind after the manufacturing process. Many of these materials, while you might not have a use for them, are useful for other companies. On the other hand, you can prevent specific materials from being wasted at all by removing them from your base manufacturing process entirely. No matter which method you ultimately choose to reduce the amount of waste you produce, this is key to making the most out of your supply.
3. Renewable Energy
Establishing a reliable source of renewable energy is another important factor in solidifying your sustainable manufacturing process. This type of energy is generated naturally by the environment and, as such, are constantly replenishing themselves. This makes them not only incredibly reliable long-term, but it also ensures that they’re healthier to use for both you and the environment. Some examples of renewable energy sources include sunlight, wind, water currents, and geothermal heat—all of which have their specific ways of being harvested.
4. Helpful Tips for Switching to Sustainable Manufacturing
Now that you know what’s all involved in adopting an environmentally friendly manufacturing process take the necessary steps to achieve this goal. Keep in mind that, while many of these changes might initially seem tedious, they’re essential to maintaining long-term, sustainable manufacturing. As such, they’re just as much of a growth investment assigning a new business partner or increasing your employee hiring rate. These are a few useful tips for making your manufacturing process eco-friendly to get you on the right track to success.
5. Monitor the Resources Currently being Used
Before you can effectively change your manufacturing process to reflect sustainable habits, you must know your current rate of resource use. This will involve carefully monitoring your entire process from start to finish and tracking how much your company uses and how much it’s currently wasting. With this knowledge, you’ll be able to best piece together the most effective course of action and make the most substantial impact.
6. Update Your Equipment
When trying to go eco-friendly, it’s also often helpful to purchase more environmentally conscious machinery where you can. Though it’s not necessary to replace all the equipment you’ll need to create your products with more efficient models, there are specific tools that come with more options. Forklifts, in particular, have models that could run on either electricity or fossil fuels. Opting to use the electric kind, especially indoors, will save you on the cost of gas and make the environment safer for your workers to breathe. Just make sure that you purchase these tools from the right forklift dealer to ensure you’re getting the best products possible.
7. Purchase and Use Recycled Materials
The best way to cut back on the amount of material waste you’re producing during manufacturing is to find other ways to use it. Rather than simply throwing it all away, try experimenting with them. You never know—you could be able to turn them into a new product or make them an additional part of the already existing process. Many businesses also choose to sell their material waste to other companies. This option gets you some of your money back and ensures that everything gets used in some way.
Partner with Eco-Friendly Companies
You could also take this opportunity to take inspiration from other companies who know more about sustainable manufacturing. Establishing good relations with other eco-friendly companies makes it easier to find the best deals on recycled materials for your products. It also provides you with a chance to compare notes and get a better idea of how you can make the most efficient process for your needs.
Providing you with the quality equipment to suit all your warehousing needs isn’t just our mission at Toyota Material Handling Ohio—it’s our duty. As such, it’s only natural that we support you in your decision to go eco-friendly by providing you with the heavy machinery that can help make that happen. Any of our stand-up electric forklifts would make an excellent addition to any forklift fleet. Along with producing fewer emissions, they’re also quiet and easy to maintain. So if you’re looking for equipment that works well with your goals, we have just what you need.