Baltic Circular Procurement Conress

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On 2nd-3rd of September 2020 procurement experts, suppliers, researchers and key opinion leaders from all over Europe will meet online to share their experiences and best practices of using procurement as an effective tool for transition towards the circular economy. The Baltic’s CPP Congress is the final conference of the Circular Public Procurement project supported by the Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme. 

All those who are interested in the conference are invited to familiarize themselves with the materials on the following website.

Study visit, Kaffe Bueno

Katarzyna Czop News

Many of us are drinking more than one cup of coffee every day. In 2018, nine billon kilos of coffee were consumed worldwide. The waste – coffee grounds – typically ends up mixed in with all our other waste, ending the loop for coffee there, and creating greenhouse gas emissions.

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Webinar on Circular tenders and tendering practices of collected waste ressources in Denmark

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Circular procurement is highly prioritized topic on the agenda in many Danish business support organisations, municipalities and companies. Accordingly, 9th of September online webinar on Circular tenders and circular reorganization of tendering practices of collected waste resources at recycling sites found place. The online event was organized in mutual cooperation between project partners of 2 Interreg co-funded projects: Circular Public Procurement (co-funded by Interreg BSR) and ProCirc ( co-funded by Interreg NSR). Event gathered more than 40 participants representing both private and public sector.

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Capacity building in circular public procurement in Finland

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Circular procurement is on the agenda in many Finnish municipalities. In the end of August, CircularPP project organized in co-operation with the Circwaste -network an online event on circular procurement capacity building focusing on construction sector and food and catering. The aim of the event was to create dialogue between procurers and suppliers, learn to implement strategic circular aims to practice and solve main obstacles that have been recognized in circular public procurement. The event was targeted to public procurers in the Circwaste -network of 11 pioneering municipalities in circular economy, but everyone interested in the issue was welcome to join. There were altogether almost 30 participants.

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Case: circular signage

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Signs, especially ones designed around a company’s or municipality’s brand, are often made through a bespoke process, using relatively unique design. This is often at odds with the principles of the circular economy, and in Sweden alone, an astounding 5000 tonnes of signage sent to landfill each year. But innovative Malmö-based sign-maker Accus AB have proved that this doesn’t need to be the case!

By focusing on functional signs, which are designed to be reused and repaired, Accus are able to reuse up to up to 99% of their signs. It has managed this designing signs in a modular way which can be maintained and adjusted, by offering take-back services, and by even providing signage-as-a-service.

This wasn‘t always the business model of Accus, which started out as a traditional ‘linear economy’ sign-maker. But owner André Zandalin wanted to make difference and do more for the environment, and took the bold decision to transform his functioning but linear business into an innovative circular business.

There are some challenges to being circular. Sometimes, for instance, perfectly reusable signs get thrown out, as people don’t always know about the options to refurbish or reuse them. One thing which might solve this is changing to a rent or subscription model. Another challenge is that buyers are too focused on lowest price rather than best value, or lowest life-cycle cost.

For cities interested in procuring circular signs, one option can be specifying in tenders that they want to buy signs which can be used multiple times. They could also take a more innovative approach, focusing more on service and function, and less on products and materials. By designing circular solutions with suppliers, cities can support the circular transition while also improving the function of their own branding and signage.

Accus were one of the businesses who addressed the Baltic Circular Procurement Congress on 2-3rd September. They have also been featured in Circular PP’s report on Alternative Business Models for the Circular Economy (or see the summary version here).