Report finds European businesses remanufacturing products in line with consumer environmental demand
A new report from digital marketing company Bazaarvoice has found consumer demands for environmentally friendly products has led to an increased investment in remanufacturing.
The research found that in Britain, France and Germany, 55%, 49% and 40% of retail marketers and supply chain managers surveyed considered consumer demands around environmentalism to be the top challenge they faced. Consequently, in the face of these challenges, companies are investing in the remanufacture of products to more environmentally friendly standards, with £2mn, €3.5mn and €1.6mn being spent on the process in the UK, France and Germany.
Joe Rohrlich, Chief Revenue Officer, Bazaarvoice said: “The figures highlight the expense associated with driving the green agenda higher up the supply chain. It’s clear that the process of remanufacturing products is not to be taken on lightly and where businesses are prioritising consumer demands for greener products, we’re seeing the highest cost figures.”
The study found that 75% of European manufacturers have been investing in higher quality materials in line with the drive for increased product life cycles. Other findings included the fact that 90% of respondents are using customer ratings and reviews to inform their relationships with manufacturers.
“These findings attest to the power of ratings and reviews in helping businesses to drive transformation through the supply chain. Brands and retailers that harness this rich customer content will be best placed to meet the environmental demands placed on them by consumers”, said Rohrlich. “Only by listening to customers can businesses deliver what they want, leading to reduced costs and increased loyalty.”
Ultium Cells LLC/Li-Cycle: Sustainable Battery Manufacturing
Ultium Cells LLC - a joint venture between General Motors and LG Energy Solutions - has announced its latest collaboration with Li-Cycle. Joining forces the two have set ambitions to expand recycling in North America, recycling up to 100% of the scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing
What is Ultium Cells LLC?
Announcing their partnership in December 2019, General Motors (GM) and LG Energy Solutions established Ultium Cells LLC with a mission to “ensure excellence of Battery Cell Manufacturing through implementation of best practices from each company to contribute [to the] expansion of a Zero Emission propulsion on a global scale.”
Who is Li-Cycle?
Founded in 2016, Li-Cycle leverages innovative solutions to address emerging and urgent challenges around the world.
As the use of Lithium-ion rechargeable batteries in automotive, industrial energy storage, and consumer electronic applications rises, Li-Cycle believes that “the world needs improved technology and supply chain innovations to better recycle these batteries, while also meeting the rapidly growing demand for critical and scarce battery-grade materials.”
Why are Ultium Cells LLC and Li-Cycle join forces?
By joining forces to expand the recycling of scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing in North America, the new recycling process will allow Ultium Cells LLC to recycle cobalt, nickel, lithium, graphite, copper, manganese and aluminum.
“95% of these materials can be used in the production of new batteries or for adjacent industries,” says GM, who explains that the new hydrometallurgical process emits 30% less greenhouse gases (GHGs) than traditional processes, minimising the environmental impact. Use of this process will begin later in the year (2021).
"Our combined efforts with Ultium Cells will be instrumental in redirecting battery manufacturing scrap from landfills and returning a substantial amount of valuable battery-grade materials back into the battery supply chain. This partnership is a critical step forward in advancing our proven lithium-ion resource recovery technology as a more sustainable alternative to mining, " said Ajay Kochhar, President, CEO and co-founder of Li-Cycle.
"GM's zero-waste initiative aims to divert more than 90% of its manufacturing waste from landfills and incineration globally by 2025. Now, we're going to work closely with Ultium Cells and Li-Cycle to help the industry get even better use out of the materials,” added Ken Morris, Vice President of Electric and Autonomous Vehicles, GM.
Since 2013, GM has recycled or reused 100% of the battery packs it has received from customers, with most current GM EVs repaired with refurbished packs.
"We strive to make more with less waste and energy expended. This is a crucial step in improving the sustainability of our components and manufacturing processes,” concluded Thomas Gallagher, Chief Operating Officer, Ultium Cells LLC.