HERA moves beyond waste management to prevention for medicines, foods and bulky goods
The HERA Group, Bologna's waste management utility, has launched three waste prevention and reuse projects since 2009. These projects were developed in collaboration with a network of public and private sector actors (public administrations, NGOs, pharmacies, restaurants, furniture workshops), and with engagement from local communities.
- "Farmacoamico" is a project set up in 2013 to collect non-expired medicines and create a solidarity network in the region, which distributes those medicines that are valid for at least another 6 months among NGOs assisting vulnerable groups.
- "Ciboamico" collects non-consumed meals in five company staff canteens, which HERA donates to NGOs making this suplus available to food banks.
- "Cambia il finale" enables citizens to give their unwanted goods a new life, by donating these to NGOs and social enterprises repairing furniture, household appliances, bicycles and other bulky stuffs. To see more about this project, view the video below:
- "Farmacoamico" involved 109 pharmacies in 13 municipalities by 2018 (covering 44% of Emilia-Romagna). In that year, HERA recovered 53,000 medicines worth €670,000 and distributed these among 30 charities
- "Ciboamico" recovered 39 tonnes of food (some 89 dumpsterfuls) and donated 91,000 meals (estimated value €375,000), thus helping 140 people a day in 8 facilities
- "Cambia il finale" is active in 80 municipalities as of 2017, when the 17 not-for-profit organizations involved collected around 866 tonnes of bulky waste in 6,773 collections