Building a Recycling-Oriented Society
Resource Conservation and Recycling in Production Operations
Promoting Resource Conservation and Recycling at Production Sites
Konica Minolta has implemented a variety of measures to reduce and recycle waste generated from production operations and is striving to reduce the amount of waste discharged, with the aim of creating a recycling-oriented society.
|Reduce material loss||Improvement in materials, parts, and product yield rates|
|Reduce packaging materials||Switching to simple packaging, increasing quantities inside packages|
|Reuse packaging materials||Switching to reusable shipping containers within the company, between production sites, with parts suppliers, and between countries|
|Reduce mold scrap||Adoption of dies with no molding scrap, minimization and internal recycling of molding scrap|
|Reduce press scrap||Minimization of feed pitch|
|Reduce support materials||Reuse of cleaning solvents, reuse of molding machine oil|
|Reuse pallets||Switching to reusable pallets with parts suppliers, changing the size of pallets for parts and using them to ship products|
Examples of Initiatives
Reducing the Amount of Waste Discharged by Applying the 3Rs to Plastic Mill Ends
Konica Minolta makes an active effort to apply the 3Rs (reduce, reuse, and recycle) to the mill ends generated at production sites in the molding processes for plastic parts. Konica Minolta Business Technologies (WUXI) Co., Ltd. and Konica Minolta Business Technologies (Dongguan) Co., Ltd., which are companies producing business technologies products in China, reduced their use of plastic raw material by developing and installing molding dies that do not generate mill ends.
They reduced the material input through the use of hot runners in molding dies, the minimization of runner sizes, and the pulverization and reuse of runner mill ends. Then, they made effective use of unneeded mill ends as material in such things as parts racks used in factories and parts boxes used in the shipment of parts from suppliers.
Reducing Packaging Material Waste
Konica Minolta is making efforts to reduce the disposal of packaging materials used at production sites when procuring materials and parts. For instance, it has simplified packaging, such as switching from stretch film for wrapping parts boxes together to packing belts that can be reused, and it has reduced the amount of packaging materials used by changing the number of units purchased when procuring materials to increase the number of units packed into boxes. Additionally, it has changed parts boxes from cardboard to reusable foldable boxes made using mill ends recycled from plastic parts. For parts procured overseas, interior materials of parts are returned to overseas suppliers for reuse and the same steel pallets used for overseas shipment from Japan are used for parts shipped to Japan from overseas, thereby reducing packaging materials both in Japan and overseas and reducing emissions. Konica Minolta Business Technologies (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd., which assembles MFPs in Malaysia, uses ABS plastic recovered from used game machines as a material for containers used in procurement and in-process transport in an effort to efficiently use resources. In an effort to streamline logistics, Konica Minolta Business Technologies (Malaysia) established a Smart Industry Center (SIC) in January 2018, which brings together major suppliers in a suburb near its plant. The aim is to reduce packaging and make more effective use of resources. This is done by adopting recycled ABS resin for shared plastic pallets used when parts are delivered within the SIC and to the factory.
Reducing Wastewater Discharge
The Group is actively working to reduce wastewater generated in production processes. Konica Minolta Chemical Co., Ltd., which produces chemical products in Japan, is working to reduce the volume of its wastewater discharge. It is doing this by concentrating waste liquid using its own distillation equipment and treating some of the wastewater at the company's own wastewater treatment facility.
Lowering Defect Rates Using Production Data
Konica Minolta is striving to improve its product defect rates by utilizing various data gathered from production facilities for quality improvement. Konica Minolta Mechatronics Co., Ltd., the mother plant for Konica Minolta's digital manufacturing, is collecting various data by monitoring production equipment and product inspections as necessary. This enables the detection of data parameters that strongly correlate with the occurrence of product defects. By checking for changes in these parameters, the company aims to achieve highly efficient manufacturing that helps prevent the occurrence of defects. Implementation of these efforts is being accelerated at all Konica Minolta production sites.
Using Fewer Pallets for Shipments
In the U.S., Konica Minolta Supplies Manufacturing (USA), which produces consumables for Business Technologies, changed its design for product loading volume on wood pallets used when shipping products. The company is improving the number of products loaded per pallet and reducing the amount of wood pallets used.