Resource recycling is an important management issue for manufacturers, and their responsibility to play a role in the shift towards a “recycling-oriented society” is increasing as society becomes more aware of problems related to marine plastics, food loss, clothing loss, and so on.
The Seiko Holdings Group uses many resources, including mineral resources and plastics, biological resources such as wood and paper, as well as chemicals and water resources that are employed in the production process. We constantly strive to make more effective use of resources and to reduce waste, not only in production and sales, but also throughout the entire life cycle of our products, from raw material extraction to disposal and recycling.
We reduce resource usage by extending the service life of our products as well as making them smaller and lighter, and we thoroughly recycle by taking advantage of recycled materials and reusing resources.
FY 2020 Summary and Future Initiatives
The Group’s manufacturing companies have taken up the challenge of resource recycling activities, including activities such as recycling cleaning agents and increasing the the number of items that can be made from a specific amount of resource materials. In our offices, we promoted paperless operations by introducing an electronic approval system and digitizing documents for remote meetings.
In the future, we will expand the scope of various performance data related to resource recycling, and strengthen resource recycling activities tailored to the operations of each Group company, such as reducing the use of plastics and computerizing instruction manuals.
Life Cycle Initiatives
Development and Design
In the product development and design stages, we use computer simulations to examine physical phenomena that cannot be seen with the naked eye, such as the stress applied to component materials and the resin flow in molded parts, in order to verify design and product performance. In addition to simulations for products and parts, we also use 3D analysis that combines a supercomputer and parallel computing software to analyze the flow of liquid ink ejected from the head of an inkjet printer. These analyses not only improve product performance and shorten design time, but also reduce environmental impact by eliminating the need for prototyping, and thus reduce energy and material consumption.
In our manufacturing companies, we are always working on resource recycling based on the 3Rs concept. Reducing (or substituting), recycling, and reusing chemical substances in the manufacturing process are all routine activities now.
We are also very much aware of the importance of water resources and are working to increase recycling efforts.
Examples of Initiatives
■ SII Printek Inc. has introduced a distillation and reclamation system to reuse isopropyl alcohol, and as a result has reduced both waste and new purchases since the start of mass production in December 2020.
■ At Seiko Manufacturing (Singapore) Pte. Ltd. in Singapore, efforts were made to increase the number of gears used, reuse cutting tools, and recycle cleaning agents.
Maintenance and revitalization of production facilities
The Seiko Holdings Group conducts regular overhauls of aging production facilities. By repairing and replacing parts, we are able to effectively use resources for longer periods without having to dispose of equipment.
We are also actively engaged in "retrofitting," which is the process of matching modern technology to older production equipment to improve functionality, maintainence, and energy efficiency. A prototype of a retrofitted cam-type automatic lathe, one of our main types of equipment, is expected to reduce energy consumption by up to 20%.
Transportation and Sales
We are working to reduce the size and weight of packaging, curb the use of extruded polystyrene foam materials, increase use of returnable containers, and display labels that facilitate sorting and recycling in accordance with existing laws and regulations.
Collection and Recycling
We collect and recycle used products and consumables through dealers and industry organizations.