Metal recycling is becoming more and more widely adopted across the world. The pressure on key industries such as the construction and the automotive industry to work more sustainably has put increased demand on this rapidly expanding sector. Various factors have helped the metal recycling industry to grow rapidly on a global level. The spread of industrialisation and urbanisation has certainly contributed somewhat, as have recent laws & regulations associated with metal production and environmental sustainability concerns. However, there are a number of challenges facing the sector, which has prompted the need for reviewing new ways to achieve success.
Challenges Faced in the Global Metal Recycling Industry
Different countries follow different rules when it comes to scrap metal. Traditional scrap flow to certain countries has been turned on its head in recent years due to legislation. This has resulted in bans / limits on specific scrap types. Metal traders eager to partner with these countries for business purposes may need to meet very high standards. With each country having its own laws and regulations, keeping track of these can be a difficult job for metal traders.
There are also challenges within the supply chain. The drive towards cost reduction in the recycling process has become a matter of importance for everyone engaged in the supply chain, from private corporates to public companies. Recycling needs to be economically viable, and a lot of this comes down to proper inventory management. Scrapyards need to know exactly what materials – and how much of it – they have. Not implementing proper inventory management may expose the business to over-commitment to sales or not realising the potential of the stock.
For health and safety reasons, metal must be correctly graded and identified to ensure that it is put to the correct use. Metal recycling mix-ups can have disastrous consequences if metal is incorrectly identified. As the volume of scrap metal which is being processed globally has increased, demand has grown for better tools to maximise scrap metal identification and profits.
How Digitalisation Is Meeting These Challenges
With the industry suffering from several process inefficiencies, traditional methods of metal recycling are fast becoming outdated. Reliance on paper for inventory managements is no longer effective as the demand on metal recycling grows. Moving to a digital method of managing inventory is therefore key. However, using digital methods for scrap metal identification and sorting is also important. Metal analysers such as the KT-100S by Rigaku are perfect for scrap metal sorting and can help businesses remain compliant.
The move to digital offers greater value and user experience when it comes to bar-coding, inventory control, stock reconciliation and testing metal grades. It offers a world of opportunities to take care of entire operations, thus allowing businesses to reduce wastes created in the processes.
To learn more about how digital technology can help you in your scrap metal business, or to arrange a free demo of the KT-100S, click here.