Company founder and Managing Director Maurice Slotine comes from a family of scrap metal merchants. Long gone, however, are the days when they would drive around calling out “Any old iron!!” and collecting scrap metal from householders who were happy to be rid of it.
Today, recycling is big business, and the sector is dominated by a number of major players who compete for lucrative municipal contracts to collect and recycle waste materials. Nevertheless, there is still room for smaller specialists.
“I spotted a gap in the market for a small company to offer a collection service for residents and small businesses in an urban setting and decided to set up the company on a 2,000 m² site in Amiens at the start of 2008,” says Mr. Slotine. “It quickly became clear that there was enough demand for us to open a second yard in St Quentin with 5,000 m² of space.”
In 2012 a new site was established in Amiens which was more than twice the size of the original. In addition, the company has access to a disposal site in Rouen where waste residues are transformed into fuel from solid industrial waste.
When it first started, the company only accepted scrap metal but now also processes plastic, paper and board. “We do not regard the materials brought to us as waste but as secondary raw materials which can be fed back into the production cycle,” says Mr. Slotine.
Momo La Récup pays according to weight and has two weighing systems so that amounts ranging from just 1kg to 100 t can be weighed and valued. The company receives between 100 and 150 t of material every month from the area in and around Amiens. The material is sorted and graded before being sold on to customers throughout France and Europe.
“There is growing demand for recycled materials not just because companies want to do something for the environment, but perhaps more importantly, they need to be seen doing something for the environment,” says Mr. Slotine. “Either way, the environment is the beneficiary.”
For Momo La Récup, recycling is a way of life and not the only way in which it tries to save the environment. It is currently working to make its depots carbon neutral by installing solar panels to generate its own energy.
“We want our business model to fit in with the third industrial revolution in which used metal, cardboard, paper and plastic is no longer seen as waste that must be disposed of but as a valuable raw material which can be reused to create value in the production chain,” says Mr. Slotine in conclusion.