skip navigation

Microsoft Ireland Scoops Top Repak Award

  • Repak’s members’ investment in packaging recycling sees them recycle 130% of the packaging they place on the market.
  • Technology, Public Sector, Schools and Recyclers’ contribution honoured at this year’s Awards


Award Winners Breakdown

  • Recycling Primary School of the Year: Attymass National School, Co Mayo
  • Recycling Secondary School of the Year: Mercy College, Inchicore
  • Member of the Year: Microsoft Ireland
  • Best Packaging Prevention Initiative: Abco Kovex
  • Repak Sustainable Packaging Design Award: Holfeld Plastics
  • Repak Best Practice Award – Hospitality: The Westin Dublin
  • Civic Amenity Site/Recycling Centre of the Year: Meath County Council
  • Kerbside Collection Service of the Year: Clean Ireland Recycling
  • Recovery Operator of the Year:  Thorntons Recycling
  • Recovery Operator of the Year: Small Medium Company: Leinster Environmentals
  • Best Schools Battery Recycling By County: Wexford County Council
  • Best Partners for WEEE Collections: Power City
  • Every Can Counts Champions Award: Longford County Council


Dublin: October 3rd 2013: Microsoft Ireland scooped this year’s Member of the Year award despite tough competition at the 2013 Repak Recycling Awards which took place in The Westin Dublin today.

This award reflects Microsoft’s continued move to reduce packaging by moving away from heavy blister type plastic packaging to lighter cardboard packs produced from sustainable sources. Microsoft continued to optimise the designs of their packs to maximise the reduction and reuse opportunities where they arose. Also, driving digital and cloud distribution methods saving on packaging, distribution and logistics costs.

“Winning this award is a real validation of Microsoft’s sustainability philosophy,” said James O’Connor MD, Microsoft Operations Centre. “With the release of Windows 8 we introduced a packaging solution that is iconic, innovative and sustainable.  The Windows 8 packaging is simple, elegant and in harmony with the environment.  The number of packaging elements has also been reduced and the packaging is made of paper rather than the typical plastic associated with DVD cases.  Over 100 tonnes of plastic (DVD cases) were eliminated, reducing the environmental impact. Microsoft has also reduced or eliminated over 1300 tonnes of packaging from other products.”

Repak celebrates 16 years of packaging recycling success in Ireland which is based on the consistent commitment of its 2,300 members who are now responsible for funding the recycling of 130% of packaging which is placed on the market by them and ensuring consumers are now recycling more than ever. Packaging represents a significant cost for many businesses and in some cases can be up to 30% of the cost of the product. Since 2005 Repak’s industry members have saved €210 million in procurement and logistic costs, demonstrating that sustainable practice is cost-effective practice.

This is Repak’s 11th year of its Repak recycling awards which are run as part of its now well established Repak Recycling Week. Chairing the awards today were Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Phil Hogan TD. 200 delegates from member companies, contractors, local authorities and other stakeholders were recognised for their role in driving packaging reduction and best practice in packaging and electrical recycling.

“The awards recognise the massive and on-going efforts from our partners and members who have helped drive delivery of major packaging and electrical recycling milestones,” said Bill Collins, Interim General Manager, Repak.  “Everyone who was nominated for these awards has demonstrated  a remarkable focus and determination in delivering best practice in packaging reduction, as well as maximising packaging and electrical recycling rates, which we want to recognise today."


Awards in detail


  • Repak/An Taisce Recycling Primary School of the Year

Attymass National School, County Mayo

  • Repak/An Taisce Recycling Secondary School of the Year

Mercy College, Inchicore, Dublin

  • Member of the Year (sponsored by Arthur Cox )

Microsoft Operations Ireland Limited

  • Best Packaging Prevention Initiative (sponsored by the EPA)

Abco Kovex

  • Repak Sustainable Packaging Design Award (sponsored by the Irish Packaging Society)

Holfeld Plastics

  • Repak Best Practice Award – Hospitality (sponsored by Rehab Glassco)

The Westin Dublin

  • Civic Amenity Site/Recycling Centre of the Year (sponsored by Rehab Glassco)

Meath County Council

  • Kerbside Collection Service of the Year (sponsored by Rehab Tetra Pak)

Clean Ireland Recycling

  • Recovery Operator of the Year: Large

Thorntons Recycling

  • Recovery Operator of the Year: Small Medium Company (sponsored by CIWM)

Leinster Environmentals

  • Best Schools Battery Recycling By County (sponsored by WEEE Ireland)

Wexford County Council

  • Best Partners for WEEE Collections (sponsored by WEEE Ireland)

Power City

  • Every Can Counts Champions Award (sponsored by Alupro Ireland)

Longford County Council


 Repak Recycling Week Awards 2013 – Winners and Finalists in Detail


Repak/An Taisce Recycling Primary School of the Year

Winner: Attymass National School, Co Mayo

Achievement: 93% yearly reduction in waste going to landfill.

ATTYMASS Green School Code-

A- Attymass School,

T- The children are keen,

T- To keep all clean,

Y- Yes we can,

M- Make a stand,

A- Always Green

S- Stop the litter

S- So our school is better.

Attymass National School is a 5 teacher school located in Ballina, Co Mayo with a total of 60 students. A comprehensive review carried out by the committee highlighted the need to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill through intensive waste minimalisation practices and a drive toward recycling and composting. Overall, a 77% reduction in the number of plastic bottles was made, a huge achievement to the school. Some of the main actions included;

  • A waste checklist as well as an audit of waste in the school. During class time it was discussed how the waste could be divided into three groups; compostable, recyclable and non recyclable.
  • To reduce the number of plastic bottles being disposed of in school. Initially Children were encouraged to bring in a plastic bottle for the week rather than a new bottle each day. Plastic bottle waste was reduced per day from 64 to 15!
    • To inform parents, pupils, teachers about the concept of recycling.
    • Children to use lunch boxes rather than kitchen roll, plastic bags and tin foil.
    • School letters backed and reduce the number of letters being sent home to reduce paper.
    • To introduce a 3 bin system for each classroom so that the litter and waste could be sorted into non recyclable, recyclable and compostable litter.
    • Reduce photocopying.

The number of plastic bottles being disposed of over a school year was an astounding 11,712 as each pupil was receiving a bottle from the healthy lunches scheme daily and this was going straight to the general waste bin and not recycled. The school went from zero composting to 5litres per week and increased their recycling by 33%. Altogether they managed to reduce their total waste volumes by 93% since implementation of the Green-Schools Programme.

The school visited a local recycling centre so they could understand where recycled waste goes. They invited local environmental experts and the heritage council to the school and published a school and parish newsletter to educate the wider community with top tips on re-using and recycling.

 Finalist: St Pius X GNS, Terenure, Dublin 6

 Achievement: Over 90% waste reduction since 2011.

Green Code: “Leprechauns can be green so why can't we?”

(The leprechaun mascot is called Bob the binner who visits the classes to let them know how they are doing with their recycling and composting but he also comes to let them know how they could do better.) St. Pius X GNS is a 24 teacher school located in Terenure, South Dublin and consists of 525 students. Their detailed review targeted food waste as a key concern and so they identified the types of food and plant waste that could be composted by looking at the food we were bringing to school and the amount of leaves that were on the ground. They reduced their total waste volumes by 90%, increased recycling by 50% and introduced composting through the following;

  • Litter surveys of the yard and of the hallways - results are recorded by the green committee including class teacher's name and litter found
  • Litter picking records - tally sheets and the types of rubbish recorded are kept in each classroom that is responsible for litter picking.
  • Amount of peelings, parings etc. in compost bins
  • Paper etc. in recycling bins
  • Paper baskets in classrooms - one paper basket should be in each classroom for any paper that has not been fully used
  • Asking teachers and green committee members on the yard to report on any wrappers taken into the yard.
  • Green Committee regularly checks each class recycling bin and records data. The results are reported back to the teacher and praise is given to the class with the best recycling practises.
  • Asking the caretaker to inform them of any unnecessary waste in the bins.
  • Monitoring the specific types of waste to target - food packaging and wrappers, paper not being fully used, fruit peelings in the correct bins.

The children are starting to recycle automatically since it has become part of daily school life. They wash out their yoghurt and drinks cartons before putting them into the recycling bin and are always very quick to point out when something is in the recycling bin that shouldn't be! Each child can visit the large compost bins to see what is happening to their peelings and eventually this compost will be used in school flower pots. Instead of just talking about how compost works they can actually see the results.

Highlighting the benefits of recycling and composting and watching the children grow to respect and love saving our environment was very positive for the whole school.

The school engaged with local experts in South Dublin City Council through workshops and presentations and met with the Lord Mayor as winners of a competition on how they would save their locality from litter. They also won a prize for their ‘Bee Green’ anti litter project submitted to the Intel Mini Scientist award.

Finalist: S.N. na Maighdine Mhuire, Co. Kildare

Achievement: 75% waste reduction

Green code:

 “Green is the colour of the recycling bin,

A place to put your paper and plastic in,

Never throw your litter on paths or roads,

Please always remember the 'green code.'

School yards and towns should always be kept clean,

Green is our colour so KEEP IRELAND GREEN!


S.N. na Maighdine Mhuire is a 5 teacher school in Broadford, Co. Kildare with 89 students.

A 75% waste reduction was achieved through the following; 

  • Litter picking carried out daily during lunch. Litter surveys carried out weekly and monitored so they can react if there are any increases.
  • Litter is counted in the classrooms.
  • Compost waste is measured using a bucket one day a week.
  • Surveys are carried out on a monthly basis to see who is using reusable containers
  • Discussion with cleaner and caretaker help us to identify any problems
  • Counting the general waste and recycling bins helps us to monitor progress
  • Bins are checked to make sure recyclable waste is not being put into general waste bins
  • Aim for 50% reduction in wrappers after one school year.

The school achieved a 50% reduction in recycling, eliminating waste from its source and increased composting by 50%! The leprechaun mascot was a huge success and helped the junior classes to complete a recycling diary either drawing a picture or writing through the eyes of the leprechaun as to how much recycling they have done during the week. The school has close links with the tidy towns committee and keep everyone informed through their Green-Schools website, notes to parents and of course their noticeboard.

Repak/An Taisce Recycling Secondary School of the Year

Winner: Mercy College, Inchicore, Dublin 8

Achievement: 73% reduction in landfill waste

Mercy College secondary is a school based in Dublin City with 26 teachers and 200 students. Their committee consists of students from every year, teachers, caretaking staff and parents. Their environmental review was extremely thorough, carrying out all essential actions and recommended actions.

The school made huge reductions in their general waste, reducing output by approximately 73%. Their recycling efforts led to a significant increase of 22% and they went from zero composting to 24L in 15 days. There was also a two thirds reduction in printer ink costs reflecting a move away from paper based communications. The school exceeded their target of reducing total waste levels by 25%. Some of the key initiatives they put into place to reduce levels of litter and waste include:

-          Encouraging the reuse of bottles or alternative drinking containers.

-          Using fewer cartons, drink packs, fizzy drink bottles.

-          Using a lunchbox instead of bags and packaging.

-          Planning lunch the evening before to avoid buying extra packaging on the way to school.

-          When using paper in any subjects particularly in subjects like Art and IT, the scraps are kept to be used again for other projects.

-          Homework moved to e-mail or delivered electronically?

-           A monthly rubbish free day.

-          Improved awareness for bin usage: improved signage and monitored large bins during break times.

-          Reinforcing the use of composting.

-          Monitoring of waste, litter warden rotas and frequent surveys to monitor awareness.

They quantified the programme’s success through data from waste trends, ink cartridge usage trends, litter problem areas, paper usage trends, Green-Schools Action Day and the Litter Warden rota.The school’s curriculum links spanned all years and covered topics such as, stewardship, environmental impact of waste, awareness raising, litter policy at the school and waste and materials usage trends at the school. The school involved the wider community throughout their programme, with Homebase supporting them in their Millennium Garden Make-over initiative and the Home-School Liaison Officer bringing the Green-Schools message to families of students. Their programme has been a great success with everyone playing their part, congratulations Mercy College.

Finalist: Abbey Community College, Co. Kilkenny

Achievement: 79% reduction in landfill waste.

Green Code: “It's a War we can Win if we put it in the Right Bin”

Abbey Community college lies on the border between Kilkenny and Waterford with 44 teaching staff and 675 students. The committee is representative of all years and divided into sub committees for raising awareness, reducing litter, recycling, and improving the outside environment. The committee used a standard SWOT Analysis approach to establish the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities & threats. When they first joined the programme all waste was going to landfill. They have reduced this by 79% by the following measures

  • Recycling of all dry mixed recyclables
  • Introduction of composting
  • Integration of new bin system
  • Bin inspections (amount / types / waste within)
  • The secretaries, caretaker, housekeeper and principal were interviewed on paper usage and the current waste management system in the school.
  • Three separate surveys were undertaken by different class groups in setting up the recycling scheme, the committee first carried out a survey identifying the types of litter generated in the school, discussed practical issues for the implementation of the new bin scheme with canteen staff and caretakers, and raised awareness using a ‘Slogan & Poster’ campaign
  •  Awareness raising of the Green-Schools project
  • Reduction of litter (inside and outside the school building)

They have kept the community involved through social media links (website,  facebook page) and hosting a number of community events including ‘National Tree Week 2012’, Parent/Teacher information seminar, Parents night, UNESCO Green Teen Workshop and various talks from local environmental staff. They have also linked in with other schools in the area to improve cross circular links.

Finalist: North Presentation Secondary School, Cork

Achievement: Over 50% reduction in landfill waste.

Green code: “Be Keen, Be Green - Meithal team made college board for school lunch room”

North Presentation Secondary School is a 29 teacher school in Cork City with 273 students. When starting the programme all waste was going to landfill. The managed to reduce their waste by 50% through an intensive recycling programme:

  • Purchase recycling bins for every classroom and all offices.
  • Put large recycling bins in the corridors for cleaners to segregate waste collected from the classrooms.
  • Find a recycling centre room in the school.  The room will be available to recycle batteries. light bulbs, aerosol cans, paint, glass and electrical equipment.
  • Get the recycling company to supply a recycling bin for weekly disposal. 
  • To collect staff email addresses and use for general communications in the school.
  • To make weekly inspections of class room bins and corridor bins.
  • To count the number of waste and recycling bags for disposal every week.
  • To evaluate the amount of A4 paper used by the school and reduce it to a quantifiable target in year 2.
  • To investigate student understanding of recycling through questionnaires.
  • To reduce contamination of the classroom and corridor recycling bins.
  • Strive for a litter free school.
  • To reduce the school waste by at least 10%.
  • To increase the school recycling by at least 10%.

The school engaged with local Cork City Litter warden, Noel Brett and keep the community informed through the local newspaper, the parish newsletter and the parents association.


Member of the Year (sponsored by Arthur Cox )

Member of the Year: Microsoft Operations Ireland Limited (winner)

Microsoft has been operating in Ireland since 1985. During that time it has expanded its operations to encompass three divisions which employ over 1,100 full time staff at its campus in Sandyford, Co. Dublin. In 2012 Microsoft continued to move to digital distribution of their Windows and Office products. Where products were required to be packaged, Microsoft moved away from heavy blister type plastic packaging to lighter cardboard packs produced from sustainable sources. The designs of their packs continued to be optimized by taking advantage of reduction and reuse opportunities where they arose as well as increasingly driving the use of digital and cloud distribution solutions.


 Best Packaging Prevention Initiative (sponsored by the EPA)

Winner – Abco Kovex

Located in Swords, County Dublin, Abco Kovex are a major supplier of packaging materials to the Irish market. One of their main products is Stratos strechwrap and this revolutionary material is the thinnest gauge stretchwrap on the market. Throughout 2012 Stratos was responsible for helping to prevent over 200 tonnes of plastic entering the waste stream. At only 11.4 microns thick the material is remarkably efficient when compared to conventional stretchwrap film, offering a 46% cost reduction and 67% material reduction.

Finalist: Clonarn Clover

Clonarn Clover is a free range eggs company founded by Leo & Margaret Farrelly in 1988 with an initial flock of 150 laying hens. Located in County Cavan the company grades, packs and markets the eggs from a total production flock of 160,000 hens. Clonarn Clover are very careful to ensure as many packaging materials are resused as possible including the pulp egg trays, steel trollies and returnable pallets which all help to ensure that none of their input packaging waste ends up in landfill.

Finalist: Carton Bros.

Carton Brothers produce the Manor Farm chicken brand and is one of the oldest family companies in the country which dates back to 1775 and are now located in their custom built factory in Shercock, Co. Cavan. Carton Brothers has one of the most modern processing facilities in Europe producing up to 600,000 chickens per week. The increased efficiency from their ‘Rip n Take’ project has helped to reduce their pallet deliveries by 59%. The company also avails of a huge pool of over 2.6 million reusable crates and 100,000 returnable pallets.


Repak Sustainable Packaging Design Award (sponsored by the Irish Packaging Society)

Winner:  Holfeld Plastics

Holfeld Plastics are world leaders in the design and manufacture of thin walled thermoformed packaging. They specialize in products that have a reduced carbon footprint through the use of leading edge technology. Through the introduction of machinery that ‘supercleans’ recycled polymer pellets, Holfeld now design and produce trays that are made from up to 90% of recycled material, are lighter than equivalent trays in the market and are designed in such a way as to minimize transport and handling requirements. This technology is being applied across a range of materials and designs and Holfeld work with their customers so that they understand the environmental benefits as well as the technical benefits of their products.

Finalist: Microsoft Ireland Operations Limited.

As well as increasing the amount of product sold through digital distribution, Microsoft have been improving the designs of their product and packaging to make them more sustainable. Some of the sustainable projects in 2012 included the redesign of the Windows 8 Fully Packaged Product range, the re-design of their Landscape Hardware product range and the simplification of their Xbox packaging, leaflets and manuals. This led to a reduction of hundreds of tonnes of packaging material as well as simpler more recyclable packaging material on their products.

Finalist: Telefonica

Telefonica are pioneering a brave move to remove phone chargers from sales of their mobile phones. As more phone companies are co-operating in the use of a universal phone charger, Telefonica have found that most customers do not want to purchase a charger when they are buying a mobile phone. By working with HTC and other mobile phone producers, customers can now purchase certain mobile phones with or without a charger, or with a lead that can charge the phone through a laptop computer or other mobile device. This will also lead to reduced transport and reduced packaging savings.


 Repak Best Practice Award – Hospitality (sponsored by Rehab Glassco)


Winner: The Westin Dublin

The Westin is a 5 Star hotel with 163 bedrooms located in Dublin city centre. The hotel has an excellent waste management system that involves all the staff and it prides itself on fulfilling, and indeed going beyond, its statutory obligations in this area.

The hotel has achieved the very highest standards in recycling and in recent years has focused on prevention projects to reduce the amount of unnecessary packaging in the hotel’s bedrooms, dining and bar areas.  This contributed greatly to making the Westin Hotel worthy winners of this year’s Repak Best Practice Award for the Hospitality sector.

Finalist: Talbot Hotel, Wexford

The Talbot Hotel Wexford dates back to 1905. It is locally owned and managed and has served the people of Wexford for over 100 years. The hotel is committed to supporting the environment and encourages all guests to contribute to this worthy endeavour. Management at the hotel is working alongside staff to improve recycling rates and this year there was a real emphasis on reducing the amount of packaging going to landfill. The hotel’s motto is “Proud of our Heritage, Conscious of our Past, Committed to our Future.”

Finalist: Grand Hotel, Malahide

The Grand Hotel is a large four star property located in the lively north Dublin seaside town of Malahide. Management and staff at the hotel show a genuine enthusiasm for waste management with an impressively high recycling rate. The hotel has always practised recycling but with the help of Thorntons Recycling they have increased their recycling and composting rates significantly in recent years thus reducing the amount of waste going to landfill.

Civic Amenity Site/Recycling Centre of the Year (sponsored by Rehab Glassco)

Winner: Meath County Council - Trim Recycling Centre

The Trim Recycling Centre is in an accessible and convenient location on the Trim ring road. It is owned by Meath County Council and the facility is managed by Oxigen Environmental since 2007. The town of Trim has a catchment area of 40,000 with approximately 26,700 users visiting in 2012. The site offers an excellent range of materials accepted and is considered a valuable service to the local community. It is opened 6 days per week with very flexible opening hours which in turn maximises its accessibility to the general public. 

With over 1,900 tonnes of waste removed from the civic amenity - It achieved a high recycling/recovery rate of 95% in 2012. The recycling facility has a one way traffic management system which ensures efficient flow. Clear signage in both Irish and English to promote Irish language and cultural heritage, along with trained recycling operatives are present on site at all times. It offers a centre of waste management education and information with regard to minimisation for the general public and local schools. News, relating to the site management is communicated to the public via numerous websites and social media outlets. This is Trim’s first year to enter in for this award and it is no surprise that they are the well-deserved winner this year.

Finalist: Kilkenny County Council – Dunmore Recycling and Waste Disposal Centre

Dunmore Recycling and Waste Disposal Centre is located just outside Kilkenny City. The site offers a waste service for domestic customers and local small businesses. In 2012, it attracted over 29,000 users due to their large catchment area. They accept an extensive range of recyclable materials. The site operators go to great lengths to educate their users and community. Various information leaflets and booklets are produced, along with newspaper advertising campaigns. The latest leaflet was redistributed to over 2,500 households in order to highlight the waste facility options. They also advertise heavily through the local newspaper, internet and with sponsorship and the site also features regularly on a Radio show slot as well as two radio campaigns during Repak Recycling Week. They have an Environmental Awareness Officer who visits the local schools and gives talks about the best ways to recycle. They consider their school tours to be the most effective tool when it comes to communication and education, and all members of staff take great pride in conducting these regular tours.

This is Dunmore Recycling and Waste Disposal Centre’s second time entering this award and their second time being a finalist and again a very worthy finalist this year.

 Finalist: South Tipperary County Council – Waller’s Lot Civic Amenity and Transfer Station

Waller’s Lot Civic Amenity, also known Cashel Recycling Centre was opened to the public in September 2006. It is run by the Local Authority and it is South Tipperary’s first purpose built facility of its kind. It is also the first recycling centre in Ireland to achieve both ISO 14001 and EMAS accreditation. It serves as a Transfer Station as well. Waller’s Lot is located on the edge of Cashel and in 2012 it attracted over 9,500 users from the surrounding towns of Tipperary, Cashel and Clonmel. They accept a wide range of materials at the facility including gypsum which is unusual among sites of this kind and has proved to be a very popular.

The centre also features an innovative, user friendly split-level design and they have also incorporated the use of the administrative building to serve as an information and educational resource centre. The site participates actively in the community, facilitating school and college tours and holding annual family fun days during National Recycling Week. A DVD was also produced about the waste management in the South East region.

Waller’s Lot Civic Amenity and Transfer Station was a previous winner in 2009 of this category and a finalist in 2010, 2011 and 2012.


 Kerbside Collection Service of the Year (Sponsored by Tetra Pak)

Winner: Clean Ireland Recycling

Clean Ireland is a family run business located in Cree Co. Clare. It is owned by brothers John and Michael O’Donoghue, who have over 20 years in waste management industry. They have a large kerbside customer basis of 30,000 households and they collect in Clare, Limerick, Kilkenny and South Tipperary. They have a 6 bin collection system which consists of residual bin, mixed dry recyclables, food waste, glass, grass and clothes. They accept an extended range of materials in the mixed dry recyclables bin once they are clean and dry.

Their Pay Per Weight charging method which applied the “Polluter Pays” principle has proved successful as they have a very low contamination rate of 6% in their unique 360L Mixed Dry Recyclables bin, the norm nationwide is provision of 240L bins. The introduction of the multiple compartment collection vehicles which is the first of its kind in Europe has meant they only have to do fortnightly collections. The use of such a vehicle is dictated by the nature of their collection area, mostly rural and some urban, with a number of spread out towns and villages. This in turn minimises disruption to customers and lowers the carbon footprint and logistics costs of collection. Clean Ireland’s customers have been informed on the most effective ways on how to recycle. All new customers are provided with a “Welcome Pack” and their website provides information on all of their services – links to leaflets as well as a DVD on best practice composting.

The company’s large expenditure in waste management technology has reflected their commitment to the environment and offering best practice kerbside collection service. This has meant that the range of services provided to their domestic customer base is unrivalled in Ireland. They have proved that they are the leading providers of kerbside collection waste management as this is their second year to “bin” this award for Kerbside Collection Service of the Year.

Finalist: Country Clean Recycling

Country Clean Recycling is a family owned business set up by Mary and David O’Regan in 1990. Their headquarters are in Mallow Co. Cork and they have a branch networks in Cork City, Midleton and Carrigline. Over the period of 1991-2003 County Clean has gone from strength to strength and acquired 9 other waste collection companies.  Their kerbside collection services span over Cork, Limerick, Tipperary, Waterford and Kilkenny where they offer a 3 bin system consisting of residual, Mixed Dry Recyclables and glass. Country Clean’s considerably large customer base of 92,000 households has meant that their recycling volume had substantially increased in 2012 where they collected over 23,903 tonnes of Mixed Dry Recyclables for recycling.

They are very active in customer education and awareness where they regularly give presentations to customers on how to recycle better. They also have dedicated a detailed recycling section on their website. Country Clean’s customer base has almost doubled in the last 4 years demonstrating customer satisfaction with their services. This is Country Cleans second time around as a finalist in this category. Next year it may be a different story in the contest for this award.

Finalist: Thorntons Recycling

Thorntons Recycling was set up in 1979 by Padraig and Carmel Thornton. It has grown from having one bin lorry into one of the largest waste management companies providing waste collection, recycling and recovery services throughout the East and North East. Currently, they have a fleet of 100 collection vehicles and a staff of 250.

They collect in Kildare, Meath and Dublin and have a customer base of 48,000 households. They have a three bin collection system which consists of residual, Mixed Dry Recyclables and compost. An extensive range of materials are accepted. Customers are also given two charging options of Pay per Lift or Pay per Weight. Thorntons Recycling also offer an alternating weekly collection - a calendar is given to each customer at the start of every year so they can clearly see what collection their respective material bins is due for collection. They are also very active with their awareness and education – customers are notified of recycling events and promotions via post and newletters and updates are communicated via email.

Thorntons Recycling kerbside collection service has to be highly commended – this is also their second year as a finalist in this category too.


 Recovery Operator of the Year – Large Company

Winner: Thorntons Recycling

Thorntons Recycling was founded in 1979 by Padraig and Carmel Thornton. Today, their headquarters are at Park West in Dublin. The company operates facilities in Dublin, Meath and Kildare. Thorntons Recycling employs over 300 people and offers a wide variety of waste services across much of the country. In 2012, Thorntons Recycling recycled over 35,000 tonnes of packaging. Much of this material was processed at their purpose-built Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) in Park West, Dublin, which opened in 2011.

Thorntons Recycling also operates an end-of-life vehicle facility in Dublin, a composting facility in Kilmainhamwood, County Meath, a civic amenity site in Dunboyne, County Meath and a confidential shredding facility at their headquarters in Park West. Thorntons Recycling is accredited with ISO standards 9001 for quality, 14001 for environment and 18001 for health and safety. These standards apply across all of the company’s facilities and have been in place since 2006.

Thorntons Recycling puts a great emphasis on education and awareness, both in terms of customers and the wider community. Educational and instructional visits to commercial customers take place on a regular basis, and excellent lines of communications are maintained with domestic customers.

Thorntons Recycling is a deserving winner of this award for a number of reasons. The new MRF has greatly helped their recycled tonnage, they communicate extremely well with their customers and they offer a comprehensive range of waste management services. Thorntons Recycling is also nominated as a finalist in the Kerbside Collection Service of the Year Award this year, for their excellent domestic kerbside operations.

Thorntons Recycling was a winner of this award in 2008, 2011 and 2012.

Finalist: Advanced Environmental Solutions

Advanced Environmental Solutions (AES) is one of the largest waste management companies in Ireland. The company was established in 2001 – the result of a merger between a number of smaller waste and recycling companies around the country. Since 2007, AES has been part of the Bord na Móna group of companies. AES provides commercial and domestic waste and recycling services and has an extensive network of facilities across the country.

Advanced Environmental Solutions employs over 370 people. In 2012, AES recycled over 15,000 tonnes of packaging waste. The company has a large base of kerbside customers, stretching across most of the country. During 2012, Advanced Environmental Solutions grew its domestic customer base to in excess of 100,000. Given the wide geographic footprint, these customers are spread over a very large area, providing a challenge for collections operations.

Mixed dry recyclables are processed at AES’s main Materials Recovery Facility in Tullamore, County Offaly. AES also owns and operates a landfill at Drehid, County Kildare, where they also operate a modern composting facility. Their remaining sites consist of various other waste processing and transfer facilities spread across the country, in places such as Rosslare, Co Wexford and Navan, County Meath.

Advanced Environmental Solutions was a finalist for this award in 2005, 2011 and in 2012.

Finalist: Oxigen Environmental

Oxigen Environmental is a large waste and recycling company based in Ballymount in Dublin. The company was established in 1987 by Sean Doyle and was rebranded as Oxigen in 2000. Since then, the group’s services have expanded throughout Leinster and the rest of Ireland. The company now manages the waste streams of 100,000 domestic, commercial and industrial customers in an environmentally efficient manner. Oxigen Environmental has in excess of 400 employees across the group. Oxigen recycled over 14,000 tonnes of packaging waste in 2012.

In 2009, Oxigen Environmental expanded it’s already well-established range of services to include Hazardous Waste Management. With its Hazardous Waste Transfer Station in operation, Oxigen is able to fully address the ever growing demand for Total Waste Management. The company has extensive experience in managing complex contracts both on behalf of Local Authorities, semi-state and corporate customers.

Oxigen Environmental has two main processing facilities located in Ballymount, and waste transfer stations in Dundalk, Cavan and Daingean, near Tullamore. The company also runs 17 Public Civic Amenity Sites throughout the Leinster region. Oxigen Environmental is a first time finalist for this award in 2013.


Recovery Operator of the Year: Small Medium Company (sponsored by CIWM)

Winner: Leinster Environmentals

Established in 2003, Leinster Environmentals employs 24 people at its facility in Haggardstown, Dundalk, Co. Louth.  The aim of the company is to provide local, regional and national customers with a solution to waste packaging recycling by accepting and recycling these materials into high quality products.  Plastic materials accepted at the site are recycled into high quality pellets and granules which are sold to customers throughout the world, who use them in place of new or “virgin” plastic granules in the manufacture of a wide assortment of products.

Leinster Environmentals deals with many materials that are considered difficult to recycle, such as hard plastics and plastic film, and adds value to the material, turning it into a positive valued commodity.  The company works with many other Repak registered Recovery Operators, providing them with an outlet for some of the materials that they are unable to properly process themselves, and subsequently ships the material directly to verified and legitimate end markets across Europe and Asia.

Operating from its bespoke 10 hectare Resource Renewal Centre, just 5 minutes from Dundalk, Leinster Environmentals recycled 15,280 tonnes of scrap plastic materials during 2012, of which 75% was plastic packaging. In addition to this, during the same period, the company also recycled 4,700tonnes of paper and cardboard packaging.

Leinster Environmentals was a winner of this award in 2010.

Finalist: Clean Ireland Recycling

Clean Ireland Recycling is a recovery operator based in the Mid-West, in Cree, Kilrush, Co. Clare. The company is a family run business owned by two brothers, Michael and John O'Donoghue. Established in 1991, it employs in excess of 130 staff and provides a full range of waste management services to both domestic and commercial customers. With a strong focus on technology, the company has recently invested heavily in state of the art, multiple-compartment collection vehicles.

With over twenty years of experience in the waste management industry, Clean Ireland Recycling has developed into one of the leading providers of waste management services in the Mid-West.

Clean Ireland Recycling has an excellent relationship with their domestic customers, and they have customer service centres located in Limerick City, Shannon, Ennis and in Cree. The company is also nominated as a finalist in the Kerbside Collection Service of the Year Award this year, for their excellent domestic kerbside operations.

Clean Ireland Recycling also provides services in the public sector, servicing Civic Amenity Sites in the Clare County Council region, including Ballyduff Beg Inagh, Lisdeen, Scariff, Ennis and Shannon. The company also services two Recycling Centres in Limerick.

Clean Ireland Recycling is a previous winner of this award, in 2007 and 2008.

Finalist: Dillon Waste & Recycling

Dillon Waste & Recycling is a family run waste management company based in Tralee, Co Kerry. Gary Dillon, the company founder, has over 40 years’ experience in the waste management business. He constructed one of the first privately owned waste transfer and recycling centres in Ireland in 1994. The company provides a range of waste management and recycling solutions, to commercial and domestic customers, for the catchment areas of Kerry, Cork, and Limerick. Over 10,000 tonnes of packaging waste was recycled by Dillon Waste & Recycling during 2012.

Dillon Waste & Recycling has continued to grow over the years, with the recent completion of a sophisticated Materials Recovery Facility at their site in Tralee. Much care and attention went into blending this facility in with the beautiful surrounding landscape. Included onsite at the Tralee facility is a state of the art civic amenity centre. As recognition of this centre, in 2011 and 2012 Tralee Tidy Town Council awarded Dillon Waste & Recycling a special recognition award for the valued services provided by this centre. Dillon Waste & Recycling was a winner of this award last year.


Best Schools Battery Recycling By County (sponsored by WEEE Ireland)

Winner: Wexford County Council

Wexford County Council district has a strong reputation for recycling through the schools with WEEE Ireland, which helps the environment while also encouraging very positive long term recycling awareness in the community. Wexford has built on a long tradition of battery collections and individual efforts by key personnel to drive awareness and encourage engagement through the schools. Our children are the voice of tomorrow and will reap the benefits of the cleaner environment that we help them to achieve. WEEE Ireland representatives visited and presented at over 30 schools in Wexford and then collected batteries from over 80 schools in the county. With three civic amenity sites, plus a newly opened facility at Gorey, and a total population of over 140,000, Wexford County Council can be proud to be among WEEE Irelands top battery recycling districts.

Finalist: Waterford County Council

Waterford County Council district, with a population of over 65,000, has made significant efforts in battery recycling throughout 2012. The County Council manages a busy civic amenity site with FREE recycling of electrical and battery waste. Working with WEEE Ireland, Waterford has continued to drive waste battery recycling through the schools which helps to educate our young recyclers while helping Ireland reach its national recycling targets. One colourful example of how the county council help to drive awareness of electrical and battery recycling was the generation of a flash mob in Dungarvan.

Finalist: Kildare County Council

Helping children while also helping the environment, is something that the people of Kildare County Council can be proud of.  Among the top three recycling county council areas for schools battery recycling with WEEE Ireland, and two civic amenity sites, Kildare also helps WEEE Ireland support its chosen charity LauraLynn. Every battery recycled helps to generate much needed funds for the children’s hospice.  WEEE Ireland representatives collected batteries from over 60 schools in Kildare, helping to drive awareness of  battery recycling and supporting schools in doing their bit to ‘recycle better’.

Best Partners for WEEE Collections (sponsored by WEEE Ireland)

Winner: Powercity

Powercity has worked closely with WEEE Ireland to inform consumers of available recycling facilities, to improve its recycling facilities and to trial new initiatives for the improvement of recycling rates. Powercity, with 7 stores in the WEEE Ireland area, offers not only the obligatory WEEE take back on sale of a new item, but also offers small WEEE recycling as a free service to visitors to the store. All Powercity stores are equipped with yellow cages for the recycling of small domestic appliances.  Powercity have also worked closely with WEEE Ireland to host Open Public Collection Days in its car parks. In order to increase Open Public Collection Day Tonnages Powercity advertise events in their newsletter and online. To encourage customers to attend these events and further drive home the message about WEEE recycling to the community, they do special discounts in store on the day of the event for everyone who recycles their WEEE & batteries.

Finalist: DID Electrical

DID Electrical, one of WEEE Irelands leading partners for WEEE collections host public collection days in partnership with WEEE Ireland at their facilities. DID, who have 19 stores in the WEEE Ireland area; advertise the public collection days that they host online through their website and social media.  On the day of the event, DID run promotional offers to incentivise the public to recycle their WEEE which helps increase awareness of WEEE and battery recycling.

Finalist: Cork County Council

Cork County Council partners closely with WEEE Ireland opening facilities to the public and being part of an important stream of electrical waste recycling for the public. Cork County Council manages the FREE WEEE recycling facilities at its 12 civic amenity sites around the county and the levels of WEEE recycling at these is such that Cork County Council is one of the top four WEEE recycling partners in the WEEE Ireland areas. In addition to civic amenity site recycling, Cork County Council works closely with WEEE Ireland to organise public collection day events. In 2012, collection events in the Cork County Council area were very successful with WEEE Ireland collecting over 290 tonnes of electrical waste. Cork County Council has ‘WEEE Houses’ on two of their civic amenity sites to help promote WEEE take back. This highlights their continued support to help raise awareness of electrical and battery waste recycling through the communities and rural areas.

Finalist: Expert Ireland

Expert Ireland has a network of stores nationwide, all delivering high levels of service to its customers. Expert serves local communities and encourages take-back of electrical waste through its well informed store managers. Expert Ireland is always willing to improve their take back rates and draws best practices from their European counterparts in the Expert Group. Online sales and delivery are important for Expert and take back of consumers electrical waste is facilitated through the delivery network. A number of Expert stores also participate in successful WEEE Ireland public collection events every year.


 Every Can Counts Champions Award (sponsored by Alupro Ireland)

Winner:  Longford County Council’s  Every Can Counts Champion, Gary Brady.

‘Environmental Awareness Officer Gary Brady, in a difficult time for all with a lack of resources, has taken the Every Can Counts initiative and promoted it to all the secondary schools in County Longford. Gary promoted Every Can Counts by running a can collection competition amongst the schools to get it started and now the can bins are present in all of the schools all year round. The can collection competition alone collected over 7,000 cans in one month and the awareness raising is ongoing in the schools reaching over 4,500 pupils and their 200 teachers and mentors.... we hope to see many more cans collected in the coming year. Well done Gary’

Finalist: Coco Cola Helenic Ireland and Northern Ireland

Coco Cola Helenic Bottlers Company Ireland (CCHBC)initiated the programme in January 2013, as a cross border initiative,  implementing it at their 2 plants at Huntstown and Lisburn with tremendous results collecting over  10 cans/person/month recycled CCHBC has promoted Every Can Counts to all employees reaching 850 employees directly & 3000 members of the public at the Coca-Cola Visitors centre annually.
Internal promotion at local level has included a launch on both sites, a poster and information campaign on Liquid TV- the company's internal TV system at both sites.

Finalist : Citi Bank:

Citi Bank has been very pro-active in supporting and implementing the Every Can Counts (ECC) Campaign at the IFSC, from internal promotions, to newsletters and  at their green awareness day – ECC has been an integral part of waste management on site. Citi Bank has promoted the programme to all employees and visitors reaching over 5,000 people annually. There are approximately 2,300 people onsite daily using the ECC bins with 27 bins in use and 13 branded sales/collection points, including vending machines, a shop and the main canteen plus a restaurant & coffee shop. They collect on average 2,200 cans monthly.

Finalist: Body & Soul Festival

Body & Soul Festival, the Body and Soul event management team included the Every Can Counts campaign from start to finish, as part of their overall waste management strategy, through media and internal communications, as well as forming part of the overall Green Festival Assessment.

10 Every Can Counts branded 1100ltr bins were strategically positioned around the festival site with maps and signposts as well as flags indicating their position, along with the well loved interactive ‘Goal’ game, where you play ‘shot on goal’ for your recycled cans and win prizes, Body & Soul also provided all VIP and green campers with ECC branded biodegradable bags to recover their cans, resulting in over 24,000 cans being source segregated at the festival over 2 days.

About Repak

  • Repak is a not for profit packaging recycling scheme funded by packaging levies charged to its 2300 participating members companies.
  • Since 1997 Repak has invested €253 million in supporting packaging recycling in Ireland.
  • In total Repak have diverted over 7 million tonnes of used packaging from landfill since 1998.
  • Repak have helped grow packaging recovery including recycling from under 15% in 1998 to nearly 79% in 2011.
  • Ireland is now ranked 7th in terms of packaging recycling amongst the EU 27.


For further information please contact:

Harriet Mansergh / Cyril Moloney/Cormac Coughlan

Slattery Communications

Tel: +353 1 661 4055

Mob: +353 86 0479 462 (CM)


created by NestDesign