The generation of waste is the main environmental impact from Eurofarma industrial and commercial activities. Mitigating these impacts is one of the company’s chief concerns, and it has invested in improvements in waste management, and also in pioneer partnerships with universities to find practical solutions to make feasible the de-contamination of primary packaging of medications by consumers. The objective is to make possible the destination to the urban selective collection system. To date, this type of waste is classified as dangerous, being forwarded to thermal destruction.
Waste management system
Eurofarma uses a computerized system for waste control on SAP, generating more reliability in operational controls and treaceability of wastes discarded by industrial processes. The constant challenge is work to reduce waste generation and improve the final destination to reduce environmental and financial impacts.
In 2015, the company inaugurated a new Waste Central at Itapevi comples, contemplating distinct areas for storage of organic, recyclable and hazardous wastes (solid, liquid and infectant), so as to improve its operational management.
Final destination – incineration and co-processing
Since 2009, Eurofarma has the objective of improving the destination os wastes considered hazardous. Since then, the volume destined to co-processing has grown when compared to the volume destined to incineration. The method that reuses hazardous wastes – with higher power of combustion – is considered less pollutant and uses cement kilns for the waste burning process using the energy released. In addition to providing a better destination to wastes, the initiative also reduces costs, since incineration is, in average, 60% more expensive. In the incineration process, the waste burn is made in own furnaces and mills, destroying micro-organisms that cause diseases. The material resulting from this burn (ashes) is forwarded to landfills. The method is efficient but more pollutant.
Piles and batteries
Destination and metal recovery – Eurofarma makes available at its Units bins for piles and batteries. In addition to receiving wastes from collaborators, it also serves service providers and visitors. The materials are destined to re-processing, which is a process involving drying/calcination, chemical reaction, milling, balancing, formulation and mixes of the metallic salts and oxides extracted. The product obtained from this process is forwarded for use as dyes.
The relevance of selective collection – The selective collection program within the company works since 2002. To assure its effectiveness, bins were installed in all Units and education and awareness campaigns are made annually with collaborators to foment a change of behavior inside and outside the company’s facilities. To encourage the practice, the whole revenue from the sale of recyclable wastes collected is reverted to the program “Hands in hands with the School”.
Biomass and energy generation – Since 2013, damaged pallets and wood packaging in Itapevi Industrial Complex are destined to the process of milling and transformation by means of biomass (renewable energy source) to generate energy. This technology is more economic and causes less impact on the environment, because it doesn’t depend on the burn of diesel, natural gas and other means of energy considered more pollutant.