Interwaste - Toitū enviromark case study


Proactive improvements, commercial benefits and strong alignment with stakeholder values fuel Interwaste’s drive for best-practice environmental performance. The Toitū enviromark certification gives them a robust framework for continuous improvement and a way to demonstrate credible action to their customers.

A specialist waste management company, Interwaste’s mission is to help protect New Zealanders by dealing with high risk waste. Its core business is focussed on the New Zealand health and biosecurity sectors and they do important work with various District Health Boards and the Ministry for Primary Industries through a robust understanding of government led legislation.

The company has maintained Toitū enviromark gold certification for the last five years and realised significant business benefits as a result.

Interwaste’s mission is “to help protect New Zealanders by dealing with high risk waste”. The important work the company does with various district health boards and the Ministry for Primary Industry requires a robust understanding of government led legislation. Commitment to this responsibility is backed by Interwaste’s care of being conscious of the impact on the environment. This is done by providing a range of sustainability initiatives to its customers. Sustainability is fundamental to the future of New Zealand, the company and people. Interwaste will continue to grow its business with respectful environmental consideration in everything it does.

Commercial benefits

Wanting to demonstrate commitment to the environment, Interwaste joined the Toitū enviromark certification programme in 2014. Some customers and industry colleagues were already certified. Interwaste saw an opportunity to align its sustainability aspirations with its key stakeholders. Interwaste chose the Toitū enviromark programme to provide confidence that claimed good environmental practices had been verified.

“Without a doubt, we have been able to better engage with our customers by being able to promote our achievement to gold level,” says Derek Richardson, CEO at Interwaste. “This brings a degree of recognition and respect from both parties, as well as firmly supporting our value proposition which ultimately results in new and retained business.”

Interwaste launched the Medicycle service which focusses on managing “difficult to recycle” products from healthcare facilities. The company wanted to be able to provide confidence in the outcomes being delivered by Medicycle and found that Toitū enviromark certification provides this assurance to their clients.

In addition to the market benefits, a robust environmental management system (EMS) improved Interwaste’s efficiencies and reduced cost. For example, the company’s largest facility saw a reduction in water usage by an astonishing 35 percent.

Staff buy-in and values alignment

Interwaste believes that sustainability is fundamental to the future of New Zealand, the company and their people. Its strongly embedded sustainability values, translate into immediate staff and stakeholder buy-in for initiatives sparked by the Toitū enviromark programme.

Support from Interwaste’s Board was instrumental in a recent project to introduce a heat recovery system for one of the company’s steam generating boilers. The upfront investment has in turn resulted in savings from reduced power, water and heat recovery.

Future procurement of energy efficient engines in trucks, product stewardship and using reusable or recyclable material are a few focus areas for the Interwaste team in its drive for continuous improvement within the Toitū enviromark certification program.

With a well-functioning EMS and a culture that supports sustainability, Interwaste intends to continue this momentum and aim for Toitū enviromark diamond certification.

Derek credits the Toitū enviromark programme for providing structure and credibility to Interwaste’s environmental efforts.

“We knew we had a strong and healthy environmental culture but lacked a framework to support this, which we now have. Toitū enviromark gold certification enables us to strive towards best practice and be as environmentally sound as we can. This work is supported by the Board, CEO, Safety Health and Environmental Manager and a nationwide passionate caring team”.

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