Simplification and adaptation of material flow cost accounting (MFCA) for SMEs
The use of MFCA can yield many benefits for businesses, including better evaluation and understanding of the costs related to material inefficiencies, greater emphasis on the economic gains of minimizing waste and production losses and the identification and prioritization of the actions to be undertaken (e.g., input substitution, process modification, internal recycling and the sale of by-products to increase profitability). As a tool, MFCA also has the power to convince business leaders to address environmental issues.
While MFCA is relevant, it requires the detailed modeling of the material flows within a business. The tool entails energy-intensive data collection and a thorough knowledge of production costs. The analysis therefore requires time, resources and expertise that are not always available in-house.
With that in mind, the research project aims to develop a simplified MFCA methodology to be used by SMEs and demonstrate the benefits and impacts of using simplified MFCA.