An award-winning recycling company is going from strength to strength thanks to its partnership with Teesside University. WRL Glass Media, in Middlesbrough, takes unwanted glass and processes it into granulated form for applications such as water filtration and shot blasting.
Since it was taken over by parent firm Ward Recycling in 2012, the business has seen its sales steadily increase and its sales in foreign markets were recently recognised with the New Exporter prize at the North East Process Industry Cluster (Nepic) annual dinner.
The company has recently announced the opening of a new office in Prague to service The Czech Republic and has successfully exported to France, Germany, Portugal, Spain, Belgium, The Netherlands, Greece, Cyprus, Israel, Italy, Iceland, Denmark and Ireland. WRL Glass Media has credited a lot of this success to its ongoing work with Teesside University.
Ward Recycling decided to take over WRL Glass Media when its previous owners, went into administration. The glass recycling market was new to Ward Recycling and the firm turned to Teesside University for help to get the PAS102 accreditation which reclassifies waste to a secondary product.
Once that accreditation was achieved, WRL Glass Media was helped to obtain a Regulation 31 certificate which allows the granulated glass to be used for filtration for human consumption - one of only two companies in the UK to achieve that standard.
The University has also worked with WRL Glass Media on several other projects including:
In addition, Gareth is also enrolled on a part-time MBA course at the University's Darlington campus.
'When our partner went into administration, we were left with a choice to either cut our losses or to take on the glass recycling plant and remain in the industry and learn about how we could reconfigure the business. That was when we contacted Teesside University who supplied us with all the information we needed to do to get the PAS102 accreditation.
'There’s barely a week goes by that I don’t contact the University – it has become my ‘go to’ company. Like a lot of people I wasn’t aware of all the different things the University could do for companies like ours, but it has been a massive help.
'What the University does needs shouting from the roof tops because it has really helped to point us in the right direction.'
‘The work we have done with WRL Glass Media shows the breadth of services which we can offer to business. What they are doing recycling unwanted material into a usable product is extremely useful as society looks to reduce the amount of waste it produces. 'WRL Glass Media was a worthy winner of the New Exporter prize and we are delighted to have been able to play a part in the company’s success.'