As the UK vehicle recycling sector has grown substantially over the past decade, many vehicle recyclers now sell reclaimed parts online through both bespoke and publicly available sales platforms. However, the ever-increasing complexity of motor vehicles and their constituent parts places specific challenges on vehicle recyclers, to ensure that they are appropriately identified, tested, removed and documented.
The advent of on-line sales platforms, such as eBay, has gone a long way towards filling a key gap in the supply chain – making the product visible to sellers. It has also normalised the sale of reclaimed parts and has provided peace of mind to buyers.
On-line sales platforms, however, also attract sellers who dismantle vehicles without having the appropriate environmental authorisations in place. These sellers operate illegally and should not be allowed to compete with legally run vehicle recyclers.
The purpose of the certification scheme is to provide end users of reclaimed vehicle parts with the confidence that:
- The reclaimed vehicle part has been accurately identified, recorded, tested, removed and sold by a vehicle recycler that operates a robust quality management system; and that
- The reclaimed vehicle part has been marketed and sold by a vehicle recycler that has, and abides by, the appropriate environmental authorisations.
What is involved?
Certification involves an annual audit and review of a vehicle recycler’s policies and procedures to ensure they meet the UK Standard for Reclaimed Parts from End-Of-Life Vehicles. The standard was developed by industry over the past year and is wholly owned by the Vehicle Recyclers’ Association (the leading trade body for the vehicle recycling sector).
The standard applies to UK-based vehicle recyclers operating an end-of-life vehicle authorised treatment facility, and includes requirements for:
- A quality management system;
- End-of-life vehicle acquisition and identification;
- Parts grading, testing, recording and storage; and
- Parts marketing, sale, delivery and traceability.
This means that every certified vehicle recycler operates a yard that is authorised by the environmental regulator and that they are also a registered scrap metal dealer by their relevant local authority.