Recycle: A partnership project

Success thanks to prepaid recycling fees

Every electrical device contains valuable raw materials. This is why we dismantle worn-out appliances and incorporate the reclaimed materials into our production cycles. In Switzerland, for example, the “Entsorgung Schweiz” foundation (SENS eRecycling) has a country-wide returns system for electronic and electrical appliances, as well as lighting. Their services are financed by consumers through the advance recycling fee (ARF). This collectively covers the cost of the collection, logistics and recycling infrastructures. 

We chose to join the system to ensure we are fulfilling our responsibility as a manufacturer and to make a contribution to the sustainable structuring of waste disposal and recycling in Switzerland. To help achieve this, we regularly report the amount and type of appliances we sell and pay the corresponding disposal charge for these. There is a pre-set amount per device, defined in a tariff and device list.

This returns system allows our customers to properly and conveniently dispose of their worn-out devices locally. This, in turn, significantly contributes to the high collection and recycling rates in Switzerland. We professionally recycle 100% of the devices we take back ourselves via the V-ZUG service.

Similar or identical returns systems are set up in all the European countries in which we sell our products. In Asia and Australia, V-ZUG works with the relevant partners to provide recycling via private organisations.

At the end of the life cycle

Our goal is to continuously increase our recycling rate. In autumn 2020, we had ten tonnes of Adora washing machines recycled in a separate batch by our recycling partner Immark AG Schattdorf in a bid to explore our potential for optimisation. In addition to steel, aluminium and copper, different types of plastic are also used to make the appliances. We want to minimise the number of different types of plastic we use and only use them where absolutely necessary. There is even more potential in removing the motors, condensers, cables and printed circuit boards as intact components. Together, we aim to identify further opportunities to develop future household appliances with maximum recyclability.

Minimising production waste

We take care to create as little waste as possible and recycle as many materials as possible within our production processes. Unmixed chads from manufacturing processes are automatically sorted into designated containers and sent for recycling. As well as metal, our production, development and administrative processes also create cardboard, paper and wood waste. Any materials that we cannot return to the cycle are disposed of properly. Including returned appliances, we recycle around 80 per cent of our waste material.