Reverse logistics - Datacity

Reverse logistics

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How to get a variety of players to work together to extract more value from dispersed household waste?

Parisians are ordering ever more goods and services online, entailing a commensurate increase in delivery flows and in the number vehicles on roads (trucks, vans, motorbikes, bicycles, etc.). And these vehicles often have unused space, especially when they return to their base.


At the same time, more and more waste is now recoverable (batteries, lightbulbs, coffee pods, etc.) and Parisians are ever keener to screen it and route it towards the right recovery channels. That said, collecting this new “dispersed” waste in busy urban areas is complex because neighbourhood collection facilities are often lacking or out of view. And recovering these flows will involve more vehicles on roads whereas the city is aiming for fewer cars.


The goal for reverse logistics, here, is to combine outgoing flows (goods or services) with incoming flows (recoverable waste) to improve waste routing and recovery while easing traffic.




  • The problem

  • Use cases and data sets

  • Business opportunities for the stakeholders

  • Results

How to get a variety of players to work together to extract more value from dispersed household waste?

The goal for this experiment is to develop a replicable solution that increases collected waste volumes or reduces waste collection costs.


Insofar as possible, this solution should encompass:


  • Households, self-employed professionals and very small business
  • Small non-routine, non-hazardous waste (batteries, lightbulbs, household appliances, printer cartridges, textiles, waste furniture, coffee pods, cigarette butts, bottle corks, cooking waste, edible oil, etc.)



Examples of solutions:

  • La Poste drivers collect used cooking oil from homes
  • An application enabling La Poste drivers, or drivers delivering meals or providing personal services for example, to collect waste for a fee


Solutions including clean mobility will be reviewed with particular interest.


For this experiment in Paris, the startup will be able to tap into partner expertise principally revolving around regulatory requirements, in-city logistics and financing arrangements:

  • La Poste
    • The transport requirements to collect different types of waste (e.g. requirements relating to waste weight, toxicity or dirtiness)
    • Delivery routes
    • Parcel delivery van geolocation information including:
      • Document and parcel volumes by address
      • Delivery categories (documents, parcels, etc.)
      • Delivery addresses, doors with access touchpads, doors with electronic keys, buildings with caretakers
      • Customer categories (residential or business)
  • Suez
      • Access to waste recovery solutions
      • Knowledge about waste collection and recovery (regulation, value chain, average volumes)
      • Proprietary web-based tools (MonServiceDéchets)
      • Partner network
  • Paris City Council
    • Knowledge about waste collection and recovery
    • Possibly the use of screening facilities around Paris to regroup small waste following collection

The solution needs to be a win-win for all the partners:


For the startup: an opportunity to develop a new product or scale up an existing one


For Suez: an opportunity to recover more waste while keeping collection costs under control and improving the service it provides for the community


For La Poste and other logistics companies: an opportunity to fill vehicles returning to base and hence operate its fleet more cost-efficiently


For Paris City Council: an opportunity to increase its recovery rate, which is a key variable in waste collection management, while limiting the impact on traffic


The tendered solutions need to be economically viable and include incentives for all stakeholders. It is not necessary to include all the partners in the proposal (but the more the better).

The challenge is ongoing and the results will be disclosed once the solution has been implemented.

Partner's Experts

Alice Francou

Head of used cooking oil recycling

Natalie Herry