Toward Sustainable IoT: Strategies for Reducing Waste

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By Tancred Taylor | 2Q 2020 | IN-5851


The IoT Giveth...


The great Marmite crisis of 2020, in which the company temporarily suspended 400g jars because of a shortage of brewer’s yeast, showed the company’s dependency on breweries and pubs for what is typically considered a waste byproduct. Further up the value chain, in 2019 Marmite’s parent company, Unilever, committed to collect and re-use all of its annual plastic waste (approx. 600,000 metric tons) by 2025 as part of its drive toward a circular economy. Waste reduction and shorter-loop supply chains are essential features of a circular economy, and if any technology can enable it, it is the Internet of Things (IoT). The premise of a connected world is to gather swathes of data on all aspects of organizational processes and assets. This enables increased operational efficiency, but can also reduce material, energy, and human waste.

Asset tracking is an important IoT segment that can help to establish closed-loop reuse models. From a physical waste perspective, asset tracking’s ability to gather data and enable strong logistics processes will play a significant role in understa…

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