SAPICS 2019 Post-Conference Ezine - Page 17

one such product. Designed to replace
Styrofoam, it is a mushroom-based
packaging material that is now being
used by furniture giant IKEA. “It grows
relatively quickly. It is cost effective; and it
decomposes in 30 to 90 days,” explained
Dull, adding that the global market for
sustainable packaging is expected
to reach more than USD140 billion in
coming years.
Organisations and governments are
investing in these initiatives because of
the capabilities of the circular economy,
including profits, she said.
Challenging the misconception that
saving the planet always comes at a cost,
Dull reported that the circular economy
is on track to add USD4.5 trillion to the
global economy by 2030 and create
hundreds of thousands of new jobs. “I
argue that the true focus of circular is
first on the ‘economy’ part; on expanding
profits,” she stated.
The circular economy highlights the
importance of extending the useful
life of an item for as long as possible.
This has increased “Product as a
Service” offerings across the market,
such as Uber, US-based “Rent the
Runway” clothing rental, and – for an
industrial example – “time on wing” for
airplane engines. Dull explained that
GE Aviation offers this time on wing
through an “Outcome as a Service”
offering to airlines, which means GE
Aviation is responsible for predictive
and preventative maintenance. “This is
important, because assets are smart.
Machines are intelligent. The Industrial
Internet of Things and Industry 4.0 are
bringing together sensors, advanced
analytics, and machine learning. This
combination means that the engine tells
us when it needs to be serviced. And, as
you can imagine, this is very powerful.”
Maintenance, Dull explained, is a key
enabler of the circular economy.
Sports brand Adidas is embracing
circular economy principles in its
partnership with “Parley for the Oceans”,
an environmental organisation that is
fighting environmental threats posed by
ocean plastic pollution. “In 2017, Adidas
sold one million pairs of its Parley brand
shoes, which are made with ocean
plastic. In 2018, five million pairs were
sold; and Adidas has announced that it
will make 11 million pairs in 2019. These
are not inexpensive shoes, but they are in
demand,” Dull said.
Proctor & Gamble is making bottles from
recycled plastic and ocean plastic. “As
part of their ‘Ambition 2030 Initiative’,
they have taken nearly all of their
manufacturing facilities past zero waste
towards circular models and have saved
over USD2 billion.”
Dull finished her presentation by
exploring the impacts of the circular
economy on the supply chain, asking
delegates to imagine waste as something
She revealed that there is growing
emphasis on designing products for
the circular economy. EcoCradle is


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