Reassuringly recycled cable management

When it comes to plastic recycling, everybody in our industry can make a difference - from manufacturers right through to end-users and including consultant engineers, contractors and wholesalers....

We all agree, it is urgent to act now to limit the damages of global warming on our environment. Amongst necessary changes, reducing landfills and greenhouse gases is a priority. It’s time to say no to single-use plastic!

The construction industry uses an impressive amount of materials and creates a lot of waste each year. Throughout the entire supply chain, we all have a role to play. You can act by making informed decisions when producing, buying, installing and removing materials and products, including plastic cable management. With the ‘Window Into Cable Management’ campaign, Marshall-Tufflex, represented by Core Distribution in Ireland and Northern Ireland, are leading the route towards a more sustainable cable management.

Together, they encourage the sector to make more informed decisions and commit to manufacturing, specifying and installing PVC-U cable management solutions with a minimum of 50% recycled plastic.

Plastic is often pointed at for being the ultimate evil waste. And indeed, it degrades at such a slow rate that it has invaded lands and oceans, creating a massive amount of harmful pollution. However, we also cannot deny that plastic is here, and it is still the best option available for many applications.

Using plastic responsibly in the cable management industry is extremely achievable. By using recycled plastic instead of virgin plastic for manufacturing products we can considerably minimise the environmental impact and prevents it from ending up in landfill or the ocean.

So why are we struggling to get there? The suitability of recycled PVC-U material in manufacturing has raised concerns: strength, durability, surface finish, aesthetics and so on. However, these concerns are easily addressable.

Recycled PVC-U is broken down into small chips, impurities removed, and the product is refined to make pure white PVC. It can be recycled at least seven times and has a lifespan of around 140 years. A rigorous quality control process ensures a high-quality finish is achieved every time. Products that don’t come out as desired can easily go back through the recycling cycle again.

For more than 75 years, Marshall- Tufflex has been pioneering plastic extrusion and led the way in product research, development and innovation, especially when it comes to using recycled material. They have successfully manufactured cable management made of recycled PVC-U for over 20 years. To do so, they use ‘post-industrial waste’ windows (waste windows from window fabricators) or ‘post-consumer waste’ windows (windows that have come out of buildings at the end of their useful life). Because windows are designed to withstand external elements, they obtain a raw material that is more robust and higher quality than virgin PVC.

Mr Paul Hetherington, CEO of Marshall-Tufflex, confirmed “We have worked closely with our recycling partners over the past years to produce a sustainable, recycled material ideal for manufacturing cable management products. Consequently, our focus has been on quality and testing to maximise the recycled content, which also improves the quality of our products. It’s a programme that has worked extremely well, and so we are very proud to now be using such high levels of recycled material.”

Last year, Marshall-Tufflex was able to use 80% recycled material, saving the equivalent in weight of 300 double-decker buses worth of PVC-U from reaching the landfill.

The manufacturer is currently working towards encouraging more industry players to contribute to take the stance of manufacturing/specifying/ installing PVC-U cable management with a minimum content of 50% recycled plastic.

Mr Hetherington developed: “We hope our drive to encourage the market to use products with a high recycled PVC content will encourage other manufacturers to up their recycling and reuse efforts. If more cable management producers joined us, we could double or treble that amount, which would make a terrific impact on the environmental performance of our sector and contribute towards a circular economy.”

Core Distribution is proud to support this initiative and calls on specifiers and contractors in Ireland and Northern Ireland to help drive up the sector’s eco- credentials by integrating plastic recycling to their specifications.

Core Distribution, Unit 4, Duncrue Industrial Park, Duncrue Road, Belfast, BT3 9BP
T: +44 (0)28 9002 0066

Unit 17b Goldenbridge Industrial Estate, Tyrconnell Road, Inchicore, Dublin 8
T: +353 (0)1 453 7033