Caravan maker capitalises on waste reduction

Concept Caravans boosted by sustainability aims
An Australia caravan manufacturer has boosted productivity while cutting waste by 20 per cent.

Concept Caravans, based in Melbourne’s northern suburbs, reduced disposable waste for every caravan produced over the past year. At the same time, its factory achieved a 10.86 per cent increase in production.

The achievement reflects the firm’s commitment to environmentally sustainable programs across the business, not solely the manufacturing process.

Concept Caravans has signed up for accreditation under the Victorian Energy Efficiency Target (VEET) scheme, with its production facility currently being evaluated for that purpose.

Participation in the CSIRO Aspire program, an online marketplace matching businesses with recyclers as well as waste and by-product purchasers, is also showing potential for further waste reduction.

“We’ve been working tirelessly to minimise wastage since we established Concept Caravans 12 years ago and we constantly look at the materials we use and how they can be reused and recycled,” said Director Keir Smith.

The firm is soon to install a high-efficiency shredder to break up wood and ply products used in the making of the caravan’s furniture, with the aim of minimising the offcuts going to landfill.

Other initiatives include the recycling of over four tonnes of electrical cable offcuts, which are granulated and reused for coating over electrical wire, plastic pallets and other products.

The copper that’s extracted in the granulating process is reused within Australia to make plumbing fittings, electrical components or exported for automotive or electrical componentry.

Almost 23 tonnes of aluminium cladding is recycled annually, with the leftover sheeting exported and transformed into aluminium ingots for use in automotive and other industries.

A number of other materials are either reused or recycled products employed to minimise waste and maximise use of resources.

“We are passionate about our caravans and strive to minimise Concept’s environmental footprint, which is why all elements of our business, especially the manufacturing process, come under scrutiny,” added Smith.

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