Knauf introduces plasterboard recycling scheme

  • 11 Dec 2023

Knauf UK and Ireland is pleased to announce its new partnership with Encore Environment to deliver an enhanced waste management service to reduce plasterboard waste. The landmark scheme looks to move towards a circular economy by taking waste plasterboard and reintroducing it to the local supply chain.

According to the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP), plasterboard can make up to a third of all waste from a fit out. And with plasterboard banned from landfill, the need to effectively manage this waste is critical. 

Knauf isn’t new to plasterboard recycling, having pioneered a recycling partnership directly next to its Sittingbourne factory.

Jon Watts, National Client Development Manager UK & Ireland, comments: “The existing factory and recycling service is fantastic. However, with this partnership we’re able to really tap into on site recycling and ensure as much goes back into the supply chain as possible.”

Contractors that use Knauf products and opt into the Take Back Scheme will be connected to local and vetted recycling companies via Encore’s nationwide network. These dedicated skips will be sent to their site and, once filled, are collected and brought to specialised local centres.

Jon adds: “This is critical, we don’t want plasterboard being taken all over the country. It’s broken down locally and then gets distributed back to plasterboard manufacturers.”

The latter process is critical to creating the basis of a circular economy.


Jon continues: “We already have something similar at Sittingbourne for local contractors. The Encore partnership opens it up nationally.”

Valuable insights

The scheme also provides contractors with valuable insights into their waste management, as Jon elaborates: “As an industry we are always trying to find ways to improve waste management. The new Knauf Take Back Scheme offers our customers in-depth reports into their waste output.

“This includes project specific carbon data and insights into waste hotspots to promote future waste reduction improvements. This data is available via an online portal to make access easy. Our new Take Back scheme is aimed at promoting the increased use of a circular economy and reducing carbon through the remanufacture of materials whilst also providing social value.”

While this data reporting process is standard for Encore, this added insight will prove invaluable to Knauf to help the business meet its sustainability goals. Thanks to their expertise in waste management, Knauf can effectively start tracking circularity and design out waste for future projects. 

What sets Encore Environment apart from traditional waste management services is its dedication not just to waste reduction, but social value too as Stacey Bee, Key Account Manager at Encore explains: “First and foremost we’re a social enterprise. That means our efforts aren’t just on reducing the number of skips on site by designing out waste, but by supporting local communities via our social value initiatives ProjectDIVERT and Waste Wise Kids.

“From donations to home-grown initiatives, it all supports the social value contribution of a site, while contributing to a company’s ESG and sustainability credentials.”

Contractors looking to opt into to the scheme, or to find out more information, can visit the Knauf website.

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