Photos: Inside Ricoh's 'Green Centre'

Photos: Inside Ricoh's 'Green Centre'

Summary: Doing it for the kids and the planet... and the bottom line...

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TOPICS: Tech Industry
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  • Doing it for the kids and the planet... and the bottom line...

    Ricoh's Green Centre near Wellingborough in Northampton is a 43,000 square foot facility dedicated to processing IT kit, principally copiers, and either returning them back into the field as a reconditioned unit or stripping them of all components which can be reused and then moving the remaining unit and components on for recycling.

    For a 'Green Centre' it seems unusual that recycling is actually the last thing they want to do here. Only around one per cent of kit is recycled – the rest is reconditioned and reused and its final end-of-life date postponed indefinitely.

    Customers are advised when kit contains reconditioned parts but many reconditioned machines are sold to trade rather than distributed back through official Ricoh channels. All machines sold to trade must be taken outside the EU to avoid conflicts with Ricoh distributors.

    Photo: Will Sturgeon

  • Originally the facility was filled with units which had been stockpiled over previous years and which had been taking up space in third party warehouses – effectively throwing away money renting space - as well as being spread across multiple Ricoh sites. That backlog has been cleared now and the facility is constantly taking delivery of newly returned units - currently at an increasing rate of around 200 per month and counting.

    The keen-eyed may spot one of the units is a Canon copier. Ricoh says it will process kit from rival companies, though Tom Wagland, environmental manager at Ricoh UK, believes some rivals are less accommodating of Ricoh kit when it turns up at their own facilities.

    He says of one rival: "They just crush any Ricoh stuff that they get."

    Photo: Will Sturgeon

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Topic: Tech Industry

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