Case Studies in Product Stewardship Shine
At Product Stewardship 2018, Dr. Sandra Meijer shared specific examples of how she and the Yordas Group have helped companies achieve their sustainability goals. These case studies resonated with many attendees, who admitted they face similar internal and external challenges.
Dr. Meijer talked about the challenges involved in pulling together an industry-standard list of restricted materials that could easily be used by a client’s partners. A multistep process was required to compile the list that resulted in reduced reporting burden and greater ease in complying with regulations.
A different client wanted to apply the most stringent level of sustainability to their factories and operations. The Yordas Group focused on identifying chemicals of concern (those that were currently unregulated but could be in the future) to create an early warning system that not only protected the business but also helped the company be on the leading edge of sustainability.
Another company was highly exposed to obsolescence—the removal of chemicals from use that required significant changes in chemical formulation. In the client’s case, this occurs due to the fact that regulatory decisions are made well after development, leaving companies high and dry. Dr. Meijer and her team built a system that linked the client’s material and regulatory databases to provide the earliest warning possible of potential impact to products.
The final case study also focused on obsolescence, specifically better tracking the presence a given substance has in a company’s product lineup. The Yordas Group created a database that identified what products were affected by any given regulatory change and linked it to manufacturing data, allowing the client to pivot their operations quickly and completely.
Dr. Meijer emphasized that these strategies give the greatest dividends when companies commit to being proactive in their product stewardship. One common theme underlying all the case studies was the need for good data to power each solution.