A zero waste Britain — pipe dream or possibility?

Jan 30 · 4 min read

Fist thing I’m going to do is ask for your help. I really want to know what you think about what myself and my team at Reyooz are trying to do. In a nutshell, we’re trying to help society put wastefulness behind them — to make waste history.

Ok, so we’re not going to manage to do that ourselves, but the least we can do is try to make a dent. Lot’s of other awesome companies and teams are trying in their own ways to do the same, we just saw that companies are wasting epic amounts of fantastic office furniture and business supplies. I’m talking about chairs and desks, cabinets and computers, fixture and fittings, even forklift trucks. Literally anything and everything that companies use to run their businesses. Most if it get’s trashed as soon as we decide to go buy some shiny new stuff. We don’t think that’s good, not for anyone.

We simply decided that this stuff could easily be given to someone else who needs it. After all, companies are paying billions to waste companies to trash what could be someone else’s treasure. If you think about it, that sounds bonkers. You can either pay someone to destroy a Herman Miller chair worth thousands, or you can pay less to give it to a charity, a school or a small business who really need every ounce of help and support they can get.

We’ve spent over 18 months on the ground, working with property managers and facilities teams to refine and hone exactly the kind of service they say they need. We’ve lifted and lugged heavy furniture and transported goods all over the UK. We’ve invested our time into understanding the real user experience, we’ve learned what it takes for a new service to make the cut.

Where we excel is software, design and tech. We know how to make software that makes hard things easier. We set out with a simple mission, to make reuse as easy as Instagram. If it isn’t easy, easier that the current status quo, then nobody will do it. You can was lyrical about how good it is for the environment, how we can save carbon the equivalent of taking 250,000 cars off the road every year. You can pull heart strings with poor kids and communities struggling to get by but — if it’s isn’t easy and cheap, you’re talking to an empty room. People are good, they care about other people and they care about the planet — but they work for companies run by accountants and they don’t have time to spend faffing around with virtuous and righteous startup spanners evangelising reuse.

So we did make it as easy as Instagram. We’ve made it fast too, we can clear your cruft faster than you can book a skip license from the “not so fast” local authority. We can beat the recycling and waste firms on price too, if your waste never becomes waste then we don’t have to pay the ever increasing taxes levied on waste disposal.

Reuse is transparent too. We track every last chair we redistribute, we know where it went and which charity bottom is now sitting comfortably doing their great work. Good causes need good equipment too, we give it to them for free — even charities and schools can afford that.

Our only bugbear is that we still have to charge our good causes for delivery. We just can’t find a way to send thousands of pounds of goods around the country for no money. The big, burly couriers won’t work for hugs — and we have tried — attempt with caution. We do however get the best prices by making friends with the best firms, and we don’t add a penny on top.

So, what I’m asking is what do you think? Would you prefer to give your surplus stuff to a good cause rather than see it smashed to bits and burned (that’s what happens to the vast majority of it). Would you recommend this crazy company that thinks we can put an end to waste next time your company is getting excited about the new furniture and fancy computer’s you’re getting?

If you do love what we’re trying to do, tell others. We’ve already convinced awesome customers like UCL, NHS, Google and CBRE that this matters and that it works.

If you think that we’re crackers or that we’re making a right mess of this and we need to sort ourselves out — tell us! It’s nice to hear what we’re doing right, but it’s sooooo much more important to hear what we’re getting wrong. Our futures are way too important to cock this up, we’ve got to get it right and make reuse the obvious choice. Zero waste isn’t a dream, it’s a necessity none of us can ignore.


Written by

I’m loving bus journeys. Who knew they could be so inspirational, two buses and two posts! You have to be on the top deck though,