Scottish re-use mapping and sector analysis report

What is the size of the re-use sector in Scotland? And how could we develop it?

The Scottish re-use mapping and sector analysis report was carried out to gain an understanding of the re-use sector in Scotland.

The report includes:

  • A mapping exercise to find out the size of the re-use sector in Scotland
  • Barriers to increasing the sector
  • Recommendations of how the barriers could be overcome 

The re-use industry in Scotland

There are 1,527 re-use organisations. The fall into three sectors.

The industry:

  • Re-uses around 89,000 tonnes of material, including 12,000 tonnes of furniture, 9,500 tonnes of electrical items and 66,000 tonnes of textiles.
  • Has a turnover of approximately £244 million.
  • Employs over 6,000 people (full time equivalent).
  • Provides around 3,000 full time equivalent volunteering positions, with more than 13,000 people involved in volunteering.

The research also suggests that there is around 150,000 tonnes of additional material that could potentially be re-used in the waste stream. 



Key recommendations made by the report include:

  • Communications and marketing to promote re-use to the public and provide information to make re-use easier
  • Expansion of the Revolve accreditation system to include the charity and private sectors in order to promote consumer confidence
  • Working with local authorities to push waste up the hierarchy through voluntary targets, re-use led procurement policies and increased partnership working
  • Provision of business support loans and training to SMEs in the re-use economy.
  • A feasibility study to assess the business case for a central repair and refurbishment hub.
  • Long-term engagement with the university sector to develop Scotland as a centre of excellence for research into sustainable design, remanufacturing and the circular economy. 

Download the full report

You can read the full report by downloading it from the right hand column. 

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