Small and medium-sized companies often assume their recycling programs won't make much of a difference to the environment. But Ken Lakin begs to differ.
Lakin is CEO of Reading, Pa.-based Boscov's Department Stores, a family-owned, independent retailer with 49 locations in six states. In a recent press release, Lakin outlined the results of the company's logistics-focused recycling initiative in 2007. Topping the list was the recycling of more than 2.1 million pounds of wood through a pallet recycling program with Nazareth Pallet Co. Damaged pallets are now mulched, and Boscov's is reimbursed for reusable pallets. The company even saved 1,300 gallons of diesel because it did not have to deliver pallets to a disposal facility.
On top of that, the retailer's corporate office, stores, and warehouse facilities recycled more than 8.6 million pounds of cardboard and nearly 295,000 pounds of office paper last year.
As for what's ahead, Boscov's says its new "stock status operating system," which uses wireless communication to assign and move cartons to stores, will eliminate 5,200 pounds of paper transfer documents and 7,400 pounds of label stock. It also plans to re-program its warehouse conveyors to activate when cartons move past photoelectric eyes.When there is no activity, conveyors will stop running, which will reduce electricity consumption.