Alpha Solway, part of Globus Group, are dedicated to more than just Personal Protective Equipment (PPE); they’re also passionate about protecting the environment. This is why they are committed to operating as a Greening Company, going further to become a positive contributor to the Paris Agreement goals.

Their core values prioritise the long-term well-being of future generations, which is why they have made economic, environmental, and socially sustainable business and operational processes a top priority.

As well as reducing their carbon footprint where they can, they are leading the way by investing in innovative production processes that are designed to reduce the use of single-use plastics and repurpose waste material.

Economic and ecological progress are intertwined, and they strive to maintain environmental responsibility as they serve their key partners and stakeholders. Their products are all manufactured using high-quality, durable materials, whilst maintaining outstanding levels of safety, protection, and reliability. The principles of “reduce, reuse and recycle” continue to drive many innovations across their product portfolio, both now and in the future. 

They are committed to designing net zero products, which will see them bring more sustainable solutions into their product range, manufacturing processes and distribution. 

Alpha Solway have focused in on local production and they have an extensive range of UK made respiratory products rather than South Asian manufacturing, which has made a significant positive impact on their carbon footprint. The importance of control and resilience in local manufacturing means they have made good strides in driving efficiency and reducing waste.

Recycling Manufacturing Waste

Alpha Solway supports innovative sustainable solutions for PPE waste by recycling excess material from mask production into cleaning materials for hospitals. The Group has a partnership with Spill Defence Manufacturing Ltd to turn scrap material from respirator manufacturing into absorbent, disposable mop heads.

The innovation means more than 40,000kg of PPE excess material is now being recycled each month from production at the Group’s Alpha Solway factories in Golborne and Northwest England, in addition to Dumfries and Annan in Scotland. This will increase over the next few months as Spill Defence increases output. 

The cleaning products are being distributed to hospitals around the UK and used to keep operating theatres clean and hygienic. The PPE excess material can also be recycled into spill kits and booms used across a wide range of industries. 

Case Study: Imperial Innovation Project

Repurposing PPE waste for reuse as secondary products

The project will pilot a ‘circular economy’ of innovation to waste in their local NHS trust, which could serve as an exemplar. This could then be scaled up across NHS Trusts and Integrated Care Service to realise significant reductions in material waste, energy and carbon emissions associated with disposables.

The project aligns with the NHS commitment to become carbon net zero by 2045 and will accelerate our progress towards sustainability. A greener NHS is a healthier world for patients, and the reuse of PPE is reassuring for our communities to alleviate concerns that the protective products are causing harm to the planet.

The main focus is to implement and pilot a proof-of-concept system that will change behaviours, and to collect single-use masks (and possibly gloves) to repurpose them into other products that have a longer lifespan. The aim will be to create greater awareness that waste reduction is everyone’s business and that waste can be converted into longer life products by locking in materials, and reducing carbon emissions from PPE by a substantial margin. The project will be rooted in all of their Trust values including collaboration with multiple internal departments. They will build the relationships needed so that they fully embrace and understand the interdependent nature of staff behaviours, waste systems and the delivery of high-quality care.

There are further benefits of using local UK-based supply chains for both PPE and secondary products – which, in addition to reducing carbon from air and shipping freight, may improve supply chain resilience, and increase the assurance of the quality of products used to deliver better and greener patient care. This is directly relevant for learning to achieve the longer-term net zero goal for the NHS by 2045 because this goal includes emissions created by their supply chains.

In Summary

Alpha Solway shares the core values that surround a deep commitment to the future. They pledge to ensure business and operational processes are as economically, environmentally and socially sustainable as possible. The aim is to reduce waste, and energy use, protect natural resources and support communities. They are committed to operating as a Greening Company, going further to become a positive contributor to the Paris Agreement goals.

They have set some ambitious goals in line with their core values:

  • Become a net zero business by 2027.
  • Build a circular economy.
  • Design net zero products.
  • Source & manufacture locally.
  • Invest in manufacturing and supply chains as close to the markets served.
  • Engage with customers and suppliers to create technologies that support secondary, and tertiary lifecycles for products after initial use.
  • Design products which require less plastic, deliver greater longevity, and provide value.

At Alpha Solway, they believe their products are integral to their customers, enabling them to perform in their roles safely giving them the ability to do the best job they possibly can. Alpha Solway has a strong heritage in providing high-quality health and safety solutions to the industrial and healthcare sectors. They believe in the safety, reliability, and ‘wearability’ of their products.