Essential Business Waste Management Solutions For SMBs

waste management

Business waste management solutions are hugely important for any business, regardless of their sector or area of business. While some types of businesses will not need comprehensive waste management solutions – such as SMBs that work out of office blocks – a whole host of SMBs will.

For commercial and industrial properties that deal with large quantities of trade effluent or dangerous chemicals, specialised waste management can help you safely and proficiently dispose of waste without risking penalties.

In this article, we’ll look at the different waste disposal services essential for business waste management.

What Is Trade Effluent?

Understanding trade effluent is pivotal to ensuring you receive the right services to handle your waste appropriately. Not all businesses will need a trade effluent licence, and different businesses will require vastly different permits for waste disposal through a sewage system.

For instance, a manufacturing plant for paint will need a trade effluent licence for any chemical waste products it produces. Likewise, a car wash will also need a trade effluent licence for their runoff – but these two businesses will have vastly different needs and permits from their licence.

The trade effluent licence ensures that no dangerous or harmful chemicals are deposited into groundwater or freshwater sources.

Note: A trade effluent licence is only required for businesses that intend to discharge their waste into the public sewage system.

Septic Tank Solutions

One common solution for handling human or animal waste is a septic tank. Having your waste be directed to a septic tank for storage is a very efficient way to store waste for disposal and reduce any trade effluent costs you may incur by direct disposal through a public sewage system.

In some cases, using a septic tank is a great way to avoid the need to pay for a trade effluent licence. If your business disposes of its waste effluent purely through a septic tank, there may not be a need for a trade effluent licence. That being said, always consult professionals in the waste management industry to ensure everything you’re doing is permitted.

The only downside to a septic tank is that, eventually, it’ll get full. How long this takes depends greatly on the size of your septic tank and how much sewage your business produces during its day-to-day operations.

Septic tanks also need regular maintenance, emptying and cleaning to ensure they stay proficient as well as safe to use. All these services can be subcontracted to professional waste management services.

If you are considering installing a septic tank, the average size for commercial premises should be around 4m x 1.5m x 1.3m (13ft x 5ft x 4.25ft). This can adequately serve an SMB with up to 100 employees.

Hazardous Waste Disposal

The production and disposal of hazardous waste are, for obvious reasons, heavily regulated. If your business produces hazardous waste, it is of the utmost importance to dispose of it safely.

Without safe disposal of hazardous waste, you could be putting local ecosystems at threat and opening your business up to heavy fines and a disastrous PR image.

Some common examples of hazardous waste are:

  • Acids
  • Oils
  • Flammable liquids
  • Solvents (industrial-grade)
  • Coolants
  • Paints
  • Fuels and types of Diesel

If your business is based in the United Kingdom, then it is imperative that you entrust your hazardous waste disposal to a SEPA-licensed waste management company. Only SEPA-licensed companies are authorised to carry and dispose of this kind of waste.

Failure to correctly dispose of this kind of waste can impose civil and criminal penalties, such as stop notices, warnings, and even prosecution.

Professional waste management companies offer plenty of options for disposing of this kind of waste, so make sure you organise a disposal plan that works for your operation.

Industrial And Commercial Cleaning

This may not seem like a waste disposal service you’d need, but industrial cleaning can produce waste that needs to be disposed of safely.

For example, the cleaning of oil interceptors will produce contaminated effluent that will need to be disposed of. Planning to clean a device such as an oil interceptor using an internal team is not recommended, again, due to the risks involved. In addition, your internal team will need all the correct certifications to work on waste disposal of this kind.

Similarly, drain cleaning of commercial or industrial properties can produce waste that cannot be disposed of normally through a public central sewage system.

Excessive food waste is a prime example of waste needing professional disposal services. Hiring equipment such as a tanker is the most effective way to eliminate large quantities of food waste without incurring fines or civil penalties.


Overall, there are plenty of reasons to look into professional waste management services, and a lot of SMBs will require these essential services.

Always be sure to consult a waste management expert before making any decisions about how best to get rid of your waste!


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