I preserve what matters by creating zero waste and recycling residue

Plastic, wood, paper, and metal are no longer going to landfill.

How did I get here?

I'm a Brazilian, and graduated as a mechanical and safety engineer and specialist in environmental issues. I joined Corbion in 2005 as total productive maintenance (TPM) coordinator and from there I moved to the quality assurance department where I dealt with our various certifications such as ISO 9001, kosher, and halal. Then in 2009 I was given the task of implementing our environmental practices at the Campos plant – and particularly a recycling program to help us dispose of various types of waste residue more efficiently.


What do I do?

To put it simply, in our manufacturing facility we have 76 different residues that are produced, and that therefore need to be disposed of – ranging from plastic to metal to oil and carbon. I'm proud to say that today, Corbion Campos has practices in place to control 100% of residues generated from our processes. The residue is destinated according to legal requirements Wood from empty pallets is donated to a local furniture company. Our waste plastic and paper is recycled with the profits going to the local community. Most importantly, only 1% of our waste residue was put into landfill (based 2020), and the focus is to reduce this number day-by-day. In other words, I preserve what matters by creating zero waste and recycling residue.


Going the extra mile.

Beyond recycling we run a social responsibility program here at Campos that helps us contribute further to preserving the local environment. For example, we have a tree-planting project where over the past five years we have planted 1,300 new trees in a park about 20km from the factory. It's not specifically a Corbion area, it's for everyone to enjoy; and that's a really satisfying thing.


The future.

Rather than recycling, our focus is now shifting towards prevention – for example, reduction of the amount of plastic cups we use, and subsequently throw way. It's about education of our people and contractors – both the head and the heart. And I'm pleased to say the message is getting through. From a recycling point of view we will continue striving to improve as part of Corbion's Zero Waste project. My ultimate goal is for us to achieve zero landfill. As for me personally... I'm very happy to be doing something I love and that makes a difference to the world around me.


Fernando Costa, Environmental Health & Safety Manager, Corbion Campos dos Goytacazes, Brazil