The sight of wheelie bins full of glass bottles on city centre streets could be a thing of the past thanks to a new product created by recycling business Ekko Waste Solutions.
The “Ekko Friendly” glass crusher has been prototyped by OEDM (original equipment design and manufacturing) company Tharsus, with an initial production run of 80 units due for delivery in early summer.
By allowing pubs, bars and restaurants to crush bottles on site, the Ekko glass crusher reduces the volume of waste by up to 80% resulting in fewer refuse uplifts, significantly lower transport costs and dramatically reduced CO2 emissions.
Safety and ease of use have been key priorities in the development of the product, as Tharsus Technical Director Dave Swan explains, “We’ve had a number of units on trial over the last 6 months and the feedback we’ve collected has been invaluable.”
“We’ve focused on creating a robust mechanism and the development safety interlocks which take into account the nature of the environment behind the busiest of nightclub bars.”
According to Ekko Waste’s Managing Director Brian Williamson the glass crusher will save bar owners both time and money at the same time as making a valuable contribution to the environment, “Glass is 100% recyclable and can be endlessly recycled with no loss in quality, purity or clarity.”
“For every ton of glass recycled, we save over a ton of resources including 1,330 pounds of sand, 433 pounds of soda ash, 433 pounds of limestone and 151 pounds of feldspar.”
“The great thing for bar staff is that there’s no need to separate glass bottles by colour, or remove fruit, straws, labels or caps from bottles.”
Ekko Waste have filed a patent application for the glass crusher that includes a number of technologies developed by Tharsus and Williamson acknowledges the value of their contribution to the development of the product, “Having developed the initial concept, we turned to Tharsus to address a number of issues that we weren’t in a position to resolve.”
“Working with Tharsus also means that as demand for the glass crusher builds we’ve already got our manufacturing strategy in place and that’s a big advantage.”
Tharsus Chief Executive Brian Palmer believes that the relationship with Ekko Waste creates a blueprint that many others would benefit from following, “We’re committed to building a truly collaborative approach with companies looking to bring innovative products to market.”
“Our customers rely on the equipment we build for them but they need to focus on core business activities so it makes sense for them to outsource development and manufacturing rather than take on unnecessary overhead or tie up valuable resources.”