Co-op expands tech-recirculation trials
Co-op has expanded its trial with tech-recirculation start-up Spring, helping consumers cut e-waste and unlock value in unwanted electrical devices.
Spring first partnered with the supermarket last October, with the launch of its high-tech, self-service Pods in 20 of the retailer’s convenience stores in London.
These kiosk-style ‘Pods’ enable shoppers to sell their old devices such as phones, tablets, e-readers and smartwatches, which then get repaired, refurbished, reused, or recycled.
Spring’s Pods accept almost 14,000 different devices and customers receive payment to their Spring account within 1-3 days. The money can be simply transferred to a bank account or to charity.
The partnership is designed to make recirculating electronic devices easier, with recent research revealing that UK households and businesses produce 1.45 million tonnes of electrical waste each year.
Where devices cannot be re-used, Spring recycles the materials, ensuring nothing goes to landfill or incineration.
Following the London launch last year, the initiative has now been rolled-out to Co-op stores in Birmingham, Brighton, Leeds and Manchester.
“Co-op’s partnership with Spring will enable more communities to recycle or reuse their electronic devices locally, unlocking the value in forgotten phones and other unwanted tech and, importantly, preventing unnecessary and avoidable e-waste,” Co-op director of innovation and format Mark Matthews said.
“If we are going to have a natural environment which we are proud to pass on to future generations we need action to be taken now. By making it easier for consumers to make small changes to their everyday lives, it can add up to make a big difference for our environment.”
Spring co-founder, Tom Williams, said: “Leaving an unused device in a drawer means that rather than it being reused by someone else, it’s taken out of circulation and needs to be replaced with something new.
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