1. BESTSELLER was looking for a better, cheaper, and more sustainable way of handling packaging waste – RafCycle was chosen as the perfect solution.
2. The RafCycle program recycles self-adhesive label waste that would otherwise go to landfill or be incinerated, helping companies to reach their sustainability targets.
3. Thanks to the RafMore by UPM Raflatac smart label solution, the process is extremely efficient and requires very little input to run.
BESTSELLER is headquartered in Denmark and owns over 20 fashion brands – including Jack & Jones, ONLY, and Vero Moda – that can be found in stores worldwide. The company employs around 15,000 people and together they are on a journey to become climate positive, fair for all, and circular by design – goals that closely align with those of UPM Raflatac.
Modeling change in the fashion industry
In 2018, recognizing the significant impact the fashion industry has on the environment, BESTSELLER announced a new sustainability strategy to accelerate change in the industry. Fashion FWD aims to counter climate change, use resources more efficiently, and promote human rights worldwide.
“As part of Fashion FWD, we were looking to find a better, cheaper, and more sustainable way to handle our labeling waste,” explains Stefan Bach Olesen, Project Coordinator, BESTSELLER Logistics. “There was too much waste in our packaging process and I wondered if we could find a more sustainable solution than incineration. Ideally we wanted to recycle the waste – our goal is to have 100% of the key waste streams from our head offices and logistics centers recycled or reused by 2025 – so RafCycle was the perfect solution.”
Combining two innovative solutions
The RafCycle waste management concept supports the circular economy by giving new life to self-adhesive label waste that would otherwise be incinerated or sent to landfill. UPM collects used label release liner from BESTSELLER and recycles it into printing paper for books and magazines.
Previously the waste collection process has been carried out manually, but now the RafMore smart label solution has been added, streamlining and optimizing the process and making it faster and easier for all users. RafMore uses Internet of Packaging (IoP) technology to track packages, with automatic inventory updates, simple pick-up mobilization, and visualized data. All BESTSELLER needs to do is to store their production waste until UPM collects and transports it to be processed and recycled.
“The RafCycle concept has been very straightforward: UPM brings us boxes for our labels and we simply scan them with a user-friendly app,” explains Bach Olesen. “We are saving money on incineration as well as becoming more sustainable by recycling the labels. We didn’t have any challenges implementing RafCycle and colleagues have been very open to the new concept. UPM Raflatac’s service has been impeccable and they are always very helpful and efficient. In just one year we have recycled 25 tons of label paper and now the project is practically running itself,” Bach Olesen concludes.
“BESTSELLER has been one of the pioneering companies in bringing digitalization to liner waste recycling. By using RafMore, UPM Raflatac and BESTSELLER have been able to achieve a more efficient process for liner waste recycling”, says Juha Virmavirta, Director, RafCycle solutions, UPM Raflatac.
BESTSELLER was presented with the RafCycle Award 2019 for recognition of excellence in recycling and environmental performance. In the picture from left to right: Juha Virmavirta, Director, RafCycle solution, UPM Raflatac, Karolien Arents, Marketing & Communication Manager, BESTSELLER with Massimo Reynaudo, Senior Vice President, EMEIA Region, UPM Raflatac and Robert Taylor, Director, Sustainability, UPM Raflatac.