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What is a circular supply chain?

circular supply chain

With the world facing environmental challenges, a shift from traditional linear supply chains to circular ones is becoming not just a trend but a necessity. Brendan O’Keeffe, Founder & CEO of Circular Supply Chain Advisory, explains circular supply chain, why it matters, and how the CSC Advisory team can help.

“Today, the primary crisis we’re facing in supply chain sectors is the blatant overconsumption of resources,” says Brendan O’Keeffe, Founder & CEO of Circular Supply Chain (CSC) Advisory. “If we don’t transition to circular supply chain processes soon, we may very well run out of essential resources, mirroring scenarios like animal extinction.”

Given the accelerating rate of resource consumption and the looming threat of resource extinction, circular supply chains have never been more relevant. But what is a circular supply chain?

“For those unfamiliar with the concept of a circular supply chain, it is a stark contrast to the traditional linear model which revolves around the ‘take, make, use, and dispose’ approach,” says Brendan. “The circular model, on the other hand, moves beyond just disposal. It re-engages with the material or product, drawing it back into a reverse logistics loop. This enables businesses to extract value from these materials and utilise them in either similar or varied supply chain applications.”

At the heart of this model is the coordination between forward and reverse supply chains, which reaps economic value creation and promotes sustainability on economic, social, and environmental fronts.

“In essence,” Brendan says, “it’s about applying the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s principles of a circular economy. This encourages the repeated use of resources rather than just discarding them post-consumption.

circular supply chain
Brendan O’Keeffe, Founder & CEO of Circular Supply Chain Advisory.

“Consider plastic waste – which most consider a bane. There are initiatives where recovered plastic is used as a primary fuel source, substituting coal in high-combustion furnace environments. The potential of a circular approach is immense when you think through how it applies across various contexts.”

But while the awareness of circularity in supply chains is growing, Brendan points out that adoption remains slow.

“The forerunners in this movement are typically large corporations committed to a net-zero carbon footprint. For most businesses, the real challenge is determining where to initiate this transition and how to gain quick value.

This is precisely where the expertise of CSC Advisory comes into play. Brendan’s experience stretches across more than 25 years of experience and myriad supply chains. When it comes to sustainability and circular supply chains, Brendan is on a mission to maximise value for businesses and create a better world at the same time.

“Our goal at CSC Advisory is clear: Sustainability is our business. We assist businesses on multiple fronts: from understanding challenges, defining focus areas, creating roadmaps, to implementation and reporting. Our consulting and executive search expertise empowers organisations to drive positive change, mitigate risks, and integrate sustainable business strategies.”

Incorporating deep market knowledge, unparalleled expertise, and vast experience, CSC Advisory stands as a trusted partner for organisations eager to intertwine business value with sustainability frameworks.

In a world teetering on the brink of resource depletion, the time to act is now.

“The shift to a circular model isn’t just about sustainability; it’s about smart business.”

For more information on how CSC Advisory can guide your business towards a sustainable future, click here.

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