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Recycling of used machinery

The correct management of surplus machinery is important for a plastics industry responsible towards the environment

Several companies within the plastics industry have grouped together in platforms like and CEFLEX to propose ideas and solutions for a circular plastics economy responsible towards the environment. The development of the plastics industry has been key in increasing human quality standards as we have seen in the past decades, for example by allowing food transport and reducing agricultural losses. However nowadays the pressing problem of plastic pollution derived from a poor waste management is a challenge for future generations and needs to be addressed urgently.

We should not just focus in recycling plastic products, obsolete machinery no longer in use has to be properly recycled as well. Many resources are consumed to manufacture a machine, from energy to raw materials. When a machine is no longer in use, we need to analyze if it maintains its productivity and efficiency values so it can be relocated to other companies. Not all used machinery can be recycled, part of it has to be scrapped. This mainly happens to very old machines, machines in bad condition or equipment that has become obsolete due to a technological change.

However a high percentage of used machinery can be relocated or sold because they maintain their productivity even after several years of use. This mainly occurs with machinery from recognized brands that keep their value in the second hand machinery market. Used equipment in good condition is very demanded by businessmen who look for a good quality-price ratio.

MachinePoint helps companies resell their used machinery outside their competitive area providing a professional and trustworthy service, with extensive experience moving complex and large machines requiring disassembly, transport and commissioning.

A machine that maintains interesting productivity levels should be relocated and recycled to reduce the environmental impact. Recycling used machinery reduces the energy and raw materials consumption required in the manufacturing of a new one. Sometimes it is not possible to relocate a used machine, either because there has been important technological changes that has made them obsolete, they are in bad condition or the time to commercialize them is too short. When this occurs a correct management of the scrap is necessary. Technological advances achieved by machine manufacturers are clear when we analyze that industry energy consumption in Europe has fallen by 20% during the last 10 years, despite a 9% increase in production (Eurostat data).

Many are the reasons why a company decides to sell its machinery, from changes in strategy and production, to problems of demand in a given market. Used machinery in optimal conditions enters the market for sale continuously. The chances of finding a buyer are much greater when the machinery can be seen in production. Once a machine has been stopped, it loses a lot of value and it costs a lot more time to find an interested buyer, often ending up in unnecessary scrapping. This is why companies should properly plan with time the future of their obsolete machinery instead of waiting until the last minute. One of the main challenges that MachinePoint´s team faces is getting companies to collaborate in the sale and relocation of the equipment they no longer need. Most companies do not have a defined surplus equipment policy, this task does not fall into any department or member of their team, resulting in great inefficiencies and difficulties to get the necessary information in time for its commercialization.

With a plastic economy that tends towards a circular economy, MachinePoint hopes that companies can relocate their obsolete machinery in a more efficient way, and that the industry understands the importance of a correct recycling of industrial machinery.

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