Huge changes are taking place at home and in the workplace as we take extra care and introduce measures to help contain coronavirus. The importance of cleanliness and hygiene and careful use of resources is particularly essential.
Despite challenges, many industries and organisations are continuing to provide essential goods and services. The list of key workers includes, but is not limited to, frontline health workers and care staff, providers of food and necessary goods, waste management, and those providing medical and personal protective equipment. The importance of their work cannot be overestimated, and we thank them for their ongoing dedication.
We are proud to support these industries by providing them with products essential to their work, including refuse sacks and bin liners, clinical and special waste sacks, personal protective equipment (gloves and aprons), laundry bags, and recycling sacks.
The health and wellbeing of our employees and our business partners is a top priority for us. Second to that, our business continuity plan has been implemented to ensure we can carry on, and we will carry on fulfilling customer orders, so that essential frontline workers and services can continue to be supplied with the products and support they need.
We are supporting our own staff, as we continue to work as normally as possible, by taking extra care and precautions, and following official guidance, to maintain a high standard of hygiene. Our office staff are now working from home, whilst still being encouraged to adopt the same levels of hygiene and care. These new working arrangements mean we can continue to handle customer enquiries and process orders. Our delivery drivers, are instructed to deploy social distances measures, use hand washing facilities where available, and hand sanitisers provided. We have also supplied facemasks to staff, to use as appropriate.
Our manufacturing and distribution channels continue to operate normally at all our factories, including the UK. We are also in daily contact with our supply partners in the Far East, Middle East, Europe and the UK. Currently, all our manufacturing partners continue to operate as normal, including China, where factories affected by government isolation procedures are now starting to go back into full production, following signs that the pandemic is slowing and some travel and work restrictions being lifted.
Climate change is another pressing issue that we are facing. Our company ethos has always been to supply products that make the world cleaner, greener and more economical. As we have regularly indicated, plastic packaging has strong environmental credentials – it is energy efficient, reduces food waste by keeping products fresh and dry and hygienically wrapped, and, most importantly, helps reduce greenhouse gases. As the British Plastics Federation emphasises “Plastic has done nothing wrong, it’s the way we mismanage plastics.”
One element of hope in this unhappy situation, is that this pandemic is making us more aware of the importance of using resources wisely. There are signs that air pollution and C02 emissions have dropped as a result of changes made to manage its impact. It will be interesting to see if governments will take more measures to ensure environmental benefits can be maintained, and resource efficiency can be improved, once this pandemic eases.
We are in a rapidly changing situation with the impact of this virus, which we will continue to monitor. We will review our strategy as necessary, and encourage our customers to keep going as far as possible, following the official guidance. Should the situation develop to the extent that we are unable to continue our operations at either of our sites, our business continuity plan contains measures to maintain a level of activity which will ensure full communication with customers and suppliers, and a review process to facilitate restart as soon as possible.