Recycling and waste management

In our operations, we aim to reduce waste, use materials effectively and ensure that the recycling rate is as high as possible.

Most of the waste generated in Oriola’s operations comes from the packaging materials of the goods arriving at our warehouses and distribution centres. Enhancing waste recycling is one of the key initiatives of our environmental work. Efficient recycling allows the reuse of packaging waste as raw material instead of combusting it for energy. This saves natural resources, reduces CO2 emissions and minimises material waste. More detailed description of our waste flows can be found in the Sustainability Report 2023.

Oriola's capability to sort waste has been systematically increased in recent years, and currently there are over 10 different sorting categories available in our biggest warehouses in Finland and Sweden, with cardboard, plastic and waste to energy being the largest categories. 

To reduce waste, we deliver products from our distribution centres to recipients mainly in reusable transport boxes and with reusable cold shields. This way, we minimise the amount of packaging waste in the logistics chain of the products we distribute. 

Preventing medicine waste from ending up in the environment

In Finland, all pharmaceutical waste from human or animal healthcare and households is classified as hazardous waste. Returning unused medicines to a pharmacy prevents them from entering the environment through mixed waste or sewage systems. We promote sustainable and safe medicine use in our daily operations and encourage consumers to return unused or expired medicines to a pharmacy. 

Another part of waste handling is Oriola’s collaboration with several charity organisations to which we donate non-pharmaceutical products that can still be used but cannot be sold due to close or just passed expiration date.