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What are the Different Types of Commercial Waste?

Unlike domestic waste, commercial waste demands special attention

Every business and household produces waste but, unlike your domestic waste, your commercial waste demands special attention, and understanding how to handle each type of waste is one of the most important, and often overlooked, parts of responsible business practices.

Common Types of Commercial Waste

Knowing how to categorise the different types of commercial waste you produce could prove crucial in implementing responsible waste management in your business. 

 

By taking a proactive approach to commercial waste management, businesses like yours can reduce their environmental impact and potentially cut down on waste disposal costs. Common types of commercial waste include:

Categories of Commercial Waste
  • General Waste

    This is the everyday stuff like paper towels, coffee cups, food packaging, and anything that can't be recycled.

  • Food Waste

    Restaurants, cafes, and grocery stores generate a lot of food scraps, expired items, and leftover raw ingredients.

  • Recycling

    Cardboard boxes, paper, plastic bottles, and metal cans are all recyclable materials that many businesses generate. Separating these recyclables from general waste is key for sustainable waste management and helps to lower your business's carbon footprint.

  • Hazardous Waste

    This includes anything that can threaten human health or the environment. Examples include used oil, batteries, paint, and cleaning chemicals. Hazardous waste requires special handling and disposal by licensed professionals.

  • Construction and Demolition Waste

    Renovations and construction projects create debris like wood, concrete, and metal. While some of this can be recycled, there will also be non-recyclable materials that need proper disposal.

  • Electronic Waste

    Used computers, monitors, televisions, and other electronic devices are a growing waste stream. Electronic waste contains hazardous materials and needs to be recycled or disposed of responsibly to prevent damage to the wider environment.

  • Sharps Waste

    Sharps are medical waste that includes needles, syringes, and other waste generated by healthcare facilities like beauty salons, tattoo parlours, aesthetics clinics, and acupuncture clinics. 

The Importance of Understanding Waste Types

By understanding the different types of commercial waste your business produces, you can take steps to minimise waste generation and implement responsible disposal practices. 

 

Some ways to get started include reducing the amount of waste you produce, assessing your current processes around waste, and reusing products that don't need to be thrown away. 

Find a Waste Management Company

One of the best things you can do when it comes to getting a grip on your business waste is to work with a waste management firm. By partnering with a waste removal company that understands proper waste segregation and disposal regulations, some of the stresses are taken away from you. 

 

waste management firm knows best practices when it comes to waste management and disposal, so you don't even have to worry about the finer details. If you want to know more about how a waste management firm could benefit your business. 

 

If you need a waste management firm, you're in the right place. Simply start by answering the question below to get started in finding the best waste management firm for your business.

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FAQs

Your Questions Answered

Knowing how to categorise the different types of commercial waste you produce could prove crucial in implementing responsible waste management in your business. To do so, you need to familiarise yourself with what kind of waste fits into which category. 

 

Common types of waste include food waste, general waste, and hazardous waste.

The UK Government says that waste is considered hazardous if it is "harmful to humans or the environment." Some common examples of hazardous waste include:

 

  • Asbestos
  • Chemicals
  • Batteries
  • Solvents
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Confidential Waste Disposal: Why You Need to Get it Right

What is Confidential Waste?Confidential waste is a broad term that refers to any documents that could lead to financial loss, identity theft, or reputational damage if it was procured by a third party. This includes several different document types ranging from financial documents to personal information, and business documents.  Sensitive information that becomes accessible by the wrong people can lead to a range of issues, many of which can have serious consequences.Ways to Dispose of Your Confidential WasteGiven the possible serious consequences of not properly disposing of your confidential waste, you'll be glad to know that several methods exist for disposing of confidential waste in the right way.ShreddingOne of the most popular ways to dispose of confidential commercial waste is, understandably, shredding. Shredding involves shredding any sensitive material so that it becomes almost impossible to reconstruct. The method is popular thanks to its ease and efficiency; paper shredders are relatively inexpensive for businesses and the job they do is irreversible.  Shredding can be done in-house by you or your staff and the resulting waste can be easily disposed of. If, however, you process a lot of sensitive information and find yourself spending a significant time shredding paper, there are companies that offer secure paper shredding services. Disposing of Digital InformationOf course, in the modern world, your business will undoubtedly store sensitive information on more than just paper. Your computers, servers, and hard drives will all have information on them that, when the time comes, will need to be deleted properly. In these circumstances, a paper shredder won't do the trick. In the case of electronic information, simply clicking 'delete' doesn't always necessarily completely erase the data you want. This is why taking your electronic equipment to a professional company that knows what it's doing. Many waste disposal companies offer such services, and using them is a good way of ensuring maximum certainty.

Five Ways to Keep Your Business Green

How a Green Approach Benefits Your BusinessIn an era of increasing environmental concerns, businesses must prioritise sustainable practices and reduce their carbon footprint.  By embracing green initiatives, companies like yours can contribute to a healthier planet while enjoying numerous benefits, including lower costs and a positive brand image. In this article, we'll explore five practical ways to keep your business green and environmentally responsible. 

How To Manage Your Business's Hazardous Waste

What Is Hazardous Waste?All businesses produce waste, but not all of them produce hazardous waste. Hazardous waste is, according to the UK Government, waste that is harmful to humans or the environment. This is quite a broad term, and it's not always clear exactly what kind of waste this includes, so read on to find out exactly what qualifies. How Do You Manage Hazardous Waste?Managing hazardous waste involves gathering and processing materials classified as hazardous. Specialised teams and equipment need to be used to minimise the harm done to both human health and the environment. The management of hazardous waste is costly but extremely important. There are several laws in place to ensure that businesses deal with it properly; whether your business is small or large, you need to make sure you remain within the strict guidelines as not doing so could result in legal action. Classifying Your WasteBefore your waste can be sent off for disposal, you need to fill in some paperwork that describes its nature. This will include what the waste is, where it was produced, and a chemical analysis of its components.  You will usually be able to see if your waste is hazardous from the waste code associated with it but, if not, you can check the Government's technical guidance on waste management.  If the waste your business produces is hazardous, you need to make sure that the company or individual responsible for disposing of it is equipped to do so. Not all waste management companies can deal with hazardous waste, so you need to work with one that does. Here are some examples: AsbestosChemicalsBatteriesSolventsPesticides If you are unsure about whether the waste your business produces is classed as hazardous, you need to check before you send it for disposal. This means that anyone who deals with it can do so properly. Hazardous Waste RegulationsYou need to be aware of your obligations regarding hazardous waste management; as a small business owner, you probably can't afford to make any mistakes.  There are various regulations your business must adhere to if it keeps hazardous waste on-site, not the least of which is the requirement to register your business as a 'hazardous waste producer' with the Government. Other rules stipulate how you should collect, store, and label your waste.  First and foremost is the requirement for your business to do everything it can to prevent the production of waste, and any waste you produce must not exceed the maximum capacity of your site. Your hazardous waste must not be mixed with other types of waste, and be stored in appropriate containers.  You should familiarise yourself with these rules, as well as the full list on the Government's website. Sticking to them will mean that you're able to keep your business, employees, and the surrounding environment safe as well as avoid any penalties for hazardous waste mismanagement.