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MHEA reveals new sustainable focus

James Bullock, chief executive officer of ConSpare and ProSpare, and president of the MHEA
James Bullock, chief executive officer of ConSpare and ProSpare, and president of the MHEA

Materials Handling Engineers’ Association announces new plans to help members tackle sustainability

AS part of a new era for the Materials Handling Engineers’ Association (MHEA), the executive committee has announced new plans this year to help its members and wider industry tackle sustainability.

The association confirmed that in 2023 the well-respected BulkEx technical conference (17–18 October) will feature sustainability at its core theme, with a host of expert speakers covering a wide cross-section of specialist materials handling topics.


James Bullock, chief executive officer of ConSpare and ProSpare, was appointed as new president of the association in October 2022, after serving as vice-president under his predecessor, Roy Ball. Mr Bullock is a sustainability champion for his own businesses and brings a plethora of insight to his work with the MHEA, following work to reduce carbon from the concrete production process.

Mr Bullock said: ‘The climate emergency is driving a new agenda as society demands action towards decarbonization and sustainability, compounded by the UK Government’s commitment to achieving net zero by 2050. As experienced professionals in the handling of bulk raw materials, our members are ideally placed to help companies handling such materials to drive carbon, as well as cost, out of their manufacturing processes.

‘Sustainability has also taken centre stage at ConSpare and ProSpare recently, and I’m keen to use my term as president of the MHEA to spread that same message to the broader industry. I’m passionate about starting meaningful conversations about what can be done at the materials handling level to adopt more sustainable practices, as collaboration and teamwork are central to our ethos as an association.’

MHEA executive committee
MHEA executive committee

The committee has also introduced a new Sustainability Award to recognize projects that have made the biggest impact, with the winners to be announced at BulkEx.

To offset the carbon generated by the committee’s work throughout the year, the MHEA has also committed to planting 200 trees, with a further 350 planted to offset the carbon footprint of BulkEx.

Linda White, secretariat of the executive committee of the MHEA, said: ‘I’ve been part of the MHEA for 20 years, and it is heartening to see the progress we have made this year. When James took over as president, he restructured the exec committee to bring a stronger focus on sustainability and to concentrate on delivering further benefits for our members. We have re-instigated our hugely popular site visit programme and bookings for this year’s BulkEx conference have exceeded all expectations.

‘As a result, membership has been growing and we have been delighted to welcome a large number of new companies into the MHEA, with expanded links to like-minded associations and end-user customers, who are bringing a new dimension to our activities.’

The executive committee consists of Matt Beverley of Hoverdale, as vice-president, Roy Ball of Rulmeca, John Connolly of Kingfisher Industrial, Neil Stott of Chain and Conveyor, Petar Karaivanov of Samson Materials Handling, Tris Young of John King Chains, Ian Atkinson of Don Valley Engineering and Chris Williams of Flender.

For more information about the MHEA, including membership and BulkEx ticket information, visit:


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