Make, use, reuse, remake and recycle was the key message for the event the Low Carbon Business Network hosted last week at the University of Derby’s, Lonsdale House; Centre for Engineering. Circular Economy expert, Catherine Weetman guided business owners and key personal through an engaging workshop with thought provoking content about how we can all make environmentally conscience decisions about business processes and improve them.

The circular economy has been introduced to eliminate the traditional linear model of take, make, use, dispose and pollute. The approach has bought a wealth of benefits which include cost and environmental savings. The objective being: how to keep the value of the product for as long as possible.

The workshop got delegates thinking with this mindset and they began to redefine the business model. Points raised included: How the product/ service could engage and increase customer loyalty, including better access to the company and listening to feedback. How the design of a product or service process could be improved including; durable and repairable products, produced for modular disassembly of specific parts that could be upgraded. What materials could be used that are sustainable and in abundance?

Consumers are becoming more demanding and require sustainable products and services but they are not prepared to pay more for it. Businesses must adapt and innovate solutions that are greener, more efficient and do not negatively impact on the environment. Adopting different ways of working which include: fixed term contracts, renting, multiple use, results driven, sharing or subscribing.

Companies leading the way with the circular economy examples discussed in the workshop included: Real car by jaguar, Easy Kicks by Nike and Stuffstf. More examples can be found here

“We really enjoyed the event. Our experiences of the way we live, socialise and do business can be wonderful without impacting the planet.”

It became abundantly clear that the circular economy can be applied to all businesses regardless of the size or sector. We are all making, buying or supplying decisions every day that are impacting on the planet, being mindful of sustainable choices can have a huge impact.