Reducing plastic packaging for DeLaval brushes

“According to WWF, if nothing changes, by 2050 almost every seabird will have plastic in their stomachs and there will be more plastic than fish in the sea. This statement made me think about the use of packaging in our assortment,” says Elisabeth Thielke, Product Specialist Farm Supplies.

Elisabeth identified a project to reduced plastic packaging that originally started back in 2017 but was not taken further at the time. She started off by ordering a box of DeLaval brushes to her office. When the box arrived from our warehouse in Gallin, she saw that it contained a lot of plastic packaging.​​​​​​​

Most of the plastic bags would go directly into the bin. These products are very robust, easy to clean and can be cleaned in the dishwasher up to 120°C. They are made to be resistant against chemicals and other liquids, so the packaging is unnecessary. 

“I started to identify the assortment and contacted the supplier to reduce packaging. The supplier was initially not very keen to start working with this change as we would not create anything new but only remove material and reduce processes. This means of course an increased workload at the start of the project. Every single item had to be discussed and it was important to clarify on what items the plastic should be removed,” Elisabeth explains.

After four months of intense discussions and weekly meetings, the supplier started to change their system in the production. The first shipment without plastic bags reached our warehouse at the end of August. The supplier has been very supportive of this project and will together with DeLaval finalise the project at the end of the year.

“Through this project, DeLaval will save approximately 1.000kg of plastic per year. So, we were able to do more with less!”

Elisabeth recently visited our dealer in Norway, Felleskjopet, who was very happy to receive these brushes without plastic packaging.

Felleskjopet has already started to display the brushes without the plastic and the feedback has been very positive.

“Let’s start with things that we can control. And the single-use plastics we can reduce a lot,” Elisabeth concludes.