Winners of the 2023 Product Stewardship Excellence Awards have demonstrated what is possible when manufacturers, brands and industry associations activate the potential of product stewardship.
At an awards ceremony in Sydney on 2 November, John Gertsakis, a director of the Product Stewardship Centre of Excellence, expressed gratitude for the work of all entrants, stating the awards shine a light on individuals and organisations that go above and beyond in managing products responsibly.
“The Centre applauds the achievements of this year’s award winners and expects that their success will inspire other businesses and industries to follow,” he said. “As consumers we should expect much more from the brands we use and support.”
This year’s Product Stewardship Excellence Awards recognise commitment and innovation in product lifecycle management through national stewardship initiatives across diverse industries and sectors.
Entrants reflected a growing number of companies, brands, and associations, that are focused on minimising environmental impact, optimising resource use, and enhancing overall sustainability right through to managing products and materials at end-of-life.
Congratulations to the 2023 Product Stewardship Excellence Awards Winners:
Best Stewardship Outcomes Collective Scheme: Australia New Zealand Recycling Platform
Australia and New Zealand Recycling Platform (ANZRP) demonstrated exceptional commitment to product stewardship. It highlights how industry can work together to achieve sustainable outcomes through reuse, repair, and recycling. ANZRP’s collection of 21,460 tonnes of e-waste in 2021-22 and the reuse of 91 per cent of recovered materials in new products showcased an unwavering commitment to sustainable practices.
Best Stewardship Outcomes Large Business: Schütz Australia
Schütz Australia demonstrated an innovative approach and commitment to circular practices with its reusable packaging systems through responsible product management, minimising waste and maximising the reuse of resources. Its Ticket Collection program, initiated in 2019, has successfully recovered about 16,000 tonnes of plastic. It collects used containers, repairs and reuses them, and efficiently manages any that can’t be reused through recycling.
Best Stewardship Outcomes SME: Cultivated
Cultivated advocates for longevity and repairability in the furniture circular economy. A commitment to quality materials and thoughtful design ensures products endure, contributing to a more sustainable and circular approach in the industry.
Excellence in Design for Product Stewardship: A.H. Beard
A.H. Beard demonstrated exemplary efforts with its Origins mattress range. Addressing the environmental crisis of mattress accumulation in landfills, the company’s innovative design approach tackles waste, pollution, and emissions, paving the way for a more responsible and eco-friendly mattress industry.
Product Stewardship Champion of the Year: Sophi MacMillan
An accomplished and respected product stewardship professional, Sophi MacMillan is a deserving recipient of the 2023 Product Stewardship Champion Award. Her contribution over two decades has been impactful, and always focused on uniting industry stakeholders towards action and solutions.
From her work with the Vinyl Council and the Asia Pacific Vinyl Network through to her current role leading the ResiLoop scheme for the Australian Resilient Flooring Association, MacMillan is a key player who understands the value and role of product stewardship in a sustainable future.
The awards presentation was attended by the Federal Minister for the Environment and Water, Tanya Plibersek.
The Minister has been clear about the need for Australia to transition to a circular economy and to place greater emphasis on designing-out waste and pollution while also prolonging the life of products and materials. This includes current government activity to regulate industries and products such as solar panels, packaging and small electronic products.