e-Badge from sustainable retail design specialists 4G Design, is set to make a major impact on the way retailers tackle the waste generated from frequent store refits when it is launched this month.
Retailers have been under increasing criticism for the amount of waste they send to landfill, including the waste generated from store refits, an industry currently worth 3 billion a year according to 'Retail Store Design' research from Mintel.
The new e-Badge is the first electronic scanning system that has been designed to help retailers to effectively manage store fixtures and fittings when they reach the end of their useful life preventing unnecessary landfill and therefore reducing the retailer's carbon footprint.
Rachel Messam, Director, 4G Design, said: "As retail design consultants it is our role to consider the materials that are specified and to reduce carbon impacts at the very beginning of the design process. Often however, our good work can be easily undone if the materials can't be properly identified at the end of their useful life making recycling often a complex and difficult issue to manage."
The e-Badge is best introduced at the point of manufacture where a barcode is placed on the fitting or fixture in a tough injection moulded clip case that can be easily accessed once in store. The barcode itself can also be branded in the retailer's corporate style so it easily blends into the store environment.
To use the e-Badge system, the retailer simply scans the barcode using any Smart phone or by simply typing a URL into a standard web browser. Once scanned they will simply log-in to a unique web page containing data relevant to that particular fixture. The information held is in PDF form so it can be easily downloaded or emailed.
Typical data saved would include: the O&M manual; deconstruction drawings; waste certificates; materials breakdowns, maintenance schedules and the names of key suppliers and designers that have contributed to the making of that fixture.
This information will be held centrally on the 4G Design hub server - so it can easily be kept up to date. For the first time, this data will not only be accurate, but it will stay with the component for its life.
Once the fixture has been recycled the retailer's waste handler will also be able to upload the necessary Environment Agency certification so they have documented proof that their waste obligations have been met by a registered business.
e-Badge can also be used as an asset management tool allowing retailers to keep track of their inventory. The retailer can now simply access the information on what fixtures and fittings are held in store at any one time, which is particularly useful with frequent changes to the store environment.
Rachel Messam, Director, 4GDesign, said: "After many years working to design and develop store fixtures for the complete carbon lifecycle - we knew that retailers needed a more practical solution. The e-Badge will ensure that the recycling loop can be finally closed. As the retailer will know how to deconstruct the fixture and who to contact to ensure this material is either reused or recycled. So they can successfully reduce both their carbon footprint and their land fill tax bill.