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Monthly Archives: April 2013

Sustainability named top purchase criteria for packaging


An independent research study commissioned by the Steel Market Development Institute (SMDI), a business unit of the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI), revealed 65% of decision makers at Fortune 500 consumer product companies view packaging sustainability as a high priority. The survey was conducted by MindClick in January and February and included packaging decision makers from major consumer packaged goods companies.

According to the research findings, the challenge for consumer products firms is the lack of meaningful information available to evaluate and compare the sustainability performance of competitive packaging materials. Packaging executives define sustainability as the way individual materials contribute to the environmental and social story of products and brands. Key contributors to determining sustainability include recycling and the energy required to transport, store, use and dispose of the packaging.  

Polythene is a flexible packaging material selected by many buyers as it is a sustainable, future proof substrate. Polythene after its first use, is to be recycled and preferably into a product that can be recycled again.  Duo has invested in a closed-loop recycling system which re-processes waste polythene back into its raw pellet form. This pellet is then used to produce new, polythene packaging products such as refuse sacks, mailing bags and film.

Click here for more information on closed loop recycling. 

SOURCE Steel Market Development Institute

How to set up a lean fulfilment operation


When you set up an e-tail business, making sure your back of house operation is a smooth, well-oiled machine may not seem like the most obvious priority.

However, ironing out the wrinkles here can improve customer experience, boost repeat ordering and ultimately up your profit margins. The big retailers have been quick to realise this and we've advised many traditional retailers on how to hone their e-tail back of house operations to help them realise these benefits. Here are our top tips on how to run the most effective back of house operation for your online business:

Speed is king - consumers have high expectations when it comes to order fulfilment. Put simply, the quicker your turnaround and slicker your operation the more you will impress your customers. In this environment time is, quite literally money.

What have you got to lose? - The answer is a lot. Back of house environments tend to be busy, dusty and generally unsuited to delicate garments, particularly light summer collections. Marked or torn garments cannot be sold and this is profit straight down the drain. If these garments are accidently sent to customers, they can result in reputational harm. To protect garments many brands including Oasis, Warehouse, and Harvey Nichols invest in funnel-necked garment covers, which completely encase a garment while also controlling levels of static.

It's all in the detail - Achieving a set-up which promotes speed means every stage of the process needs to be carefully considered. A good starting point is talking to manufactures about how garments arrive; if they are properly protected at this stage it can prevent issues further down the line. Similarly ensuring pickers have the right tools for the job can pay dividends - packing benches should be thoughtfully arranged so all your packaging items can be easily reached to make packing fast and easy.  Similarly, postal packaging should be easy to handle, well-fitting and up to the rigours placed upon it. This is an area we've advised many big brands on.

And what about the rubbish? Ensuring waste is disposed of efficiently is all part of running a slick back office. Brands like Harrods use colour coded waste sacks for different in-house processes and distinguish between different types recycling and landfill. Clear sacks can also reduce pilfer.

With 25 years experience in the packaging industry our packaging experts applying their technical know-how to review our customers current packing operation and create the best packaging solution to optimise your back of house processes. To arrange a site visit please contact Duo.


Article featured on Drapers Online 26th March 13.


Behind the Scenes: BBC Radio 5 Live Budget Special At Duo

On Wednesday 20th March, Duo's warehouse was taken over by BBC 5Live and transformed into a radio studio to host their special budget edition of their show live from Duo.

Despite the freezing temparatures, the debate was lively and spirts were high. Take a look at all the behind the scenes action from the show.

Still not had chance to listen to the show? You still have 2 days left to listen online at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01rk56h

Dave and Max

Duo Managing Director David Brimelow with BBC 5Live presenter Max Rushden

Dave, Paul, Dale

Director Dale Brimelow with Finacial Director Paul Teasdale and Managing Director David Brimelow

Team - BBC


Group BBC

Dave and Paul

Luke and Paul

Duo Finance department manager Luke Kness and apprentice electrical engineer Paul Brown

A huge thanks to all the BBC 5Live team,Labour MP Lucy Powell, Conservative MP David Mowat, Leader of the Liberal Democrats for Liverpool City Council Richard Kemp, property expert Robert Reed, and Children's nurse and Royal College of Nursing council member Mike Travis.

Also a special thank you to Neilson Reeves Photography Manchester for the covering the event and producing some great PR and Editorial Photography for external and internal communications.


What are you hoping to see from the budget today?


Only a few hours to go until the budget is announced. Duo Managing Director, David Brimelow discusses what he is hoping to see from the budget today:

Government support for manufacturing

I would love to hear that UK manufacturing is to get support. We can, given the right assistance provide jobs which in turn would help to reduce the welfare bill and provide income for the Treasury, as we say in Business this would be a win win situation.

Reintroduction of capital allowances

Like many Companies Duo have never sought handouts but perhaps there needs to be some consideration to rewarding Companies that have achieved growth and job creation in these times of austerity. Perhaps a return to increased Capital Allowances could be considered.

Buy British, support UK manufacturing

Duo are a Company that believe we should not look to the Government to provide all the answers but we also believe British industry has a role in pulling together in such hard times. We should look to BUY BRITISH, protect and develop our UK skills, our workforce and help us grow strong now in order that we are ready for the future.

Many of our customers are big high street retailers who by buying from us as UK manufacturers and are supporting their own economy, but why not more?

BBC Radio Five Live from Duo Tonight

BBC Radio Five Live will be hosting a special budget edition of the Tony Livesey show at Duo's Manchester headquarters tonight from 10:30pm.

You can listen to Radio 5 in the following ways:

· On DAB and analogue radio (909/693 AM)

· Online, via iPlayer: www.bbc.co.uk/5live

· Virgin  media 905

· Sky 0105

· Freesat 705


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