AO turns unwanted fridges into healthy fresh air

Online electricals retailer AO has announced that plastics extracted from old fridges collected from customers’ homes will be used to create brand new sustainable ventilation products for the first time.

AO's recycling facility in Telford
AO's recycling facility in Telford

AO will supply recycled high impact polystyrene (HIPS) from approximately 63,000 fridges each year, collected at its recycling facility in Telford.

The HIPS will be used to create the vital ducting components in energy saving systems produced by UK-based manufacturer of domestic ventilation fans, Volution Group plc.

The ventilation systems are installed to recover heat from extracted air and use it to reduce heat loss and save energy in the properties in the most economical and eco-friendly way.

This is a huge step forward for the retailer, who opened its recycling facility in 2017 and now recycles over 1.2 million appliances every year, which are collected from both customers and the public via its ‘Collect and Recycle’ service.

The plastic collected is cleaned and refined into reusable material at its plastic plant, which recently celebrated its first anniversary.

Rob Sant, MD of AO Recycling, said: “We’re so pleased that Volution will be using the plastic from our fridges to create fantastic eco products.

"As a retailer, AO want to take responsibility for the entire recycling process, from start to finish, and we’re proud to be producing high quality plastic that can be easily used in new products.

"The circular economy is really at the forefront of our business ambitions and our investment in plastic is key to fulfilling our long-term goals.”

AO said Volution Group shares its sustainability ambitions, making it the ideal supply chain partner and will be supplied through Ultrapolymers.

Lee Nurse, business development director at Volution Group, said: “We are delighted to be part of such a great initiative.

"With Volution Group having a target of 90 per cent of the plastics we use in our facilities to come from recycled sources by 2025, this is a huge step towards us fulfilling our goal.

"The components made will also form part of our centralised heat recovery systems helping to provide energy saving ventilation solutions into new build housing.”

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