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Remanufacturing in India: Approaches, Potentials & Technical challenges

  • International Institute of Hotel Management Bangalore


Remanufacturing is an attractive business process of returning end-of-life products to original "as-good-as-new" condition in a manufacturing environment. Remanufacturing has been accepted by western world but India is yet to take it up as an organized industrial sector. Remanufacturing industry in India has huge potential for employment and wealth generation. But it needs a new approach to the sector. In this paper, we will discuss about industry approaches towards remanufacturing, its potential to grow in India and technical challenges faced by the industry, environment and society.
International Journal of Industrial Engineering and Technology.
ISSN 0974-3146 Volume 3, Number 3 (2011), pp. 223-227
© International Research Publication House
Remanufacturing in India: Approaches, Potentials &
Technical challenges
Nita Choudhary1 and Niranjan Kumar Singh2
1Lecturer, Department of Management Studies,
C.N.K. Reddy College of Business Management,
No. 193, Double Road, Indiranagar 2nd Stage, Bangalore–560038, India
2Engineer (QE), BEML Ltd., New Thipassandra Post,
Bangalore–560075, India
Remanufacturing is an attractive business process of returning end-of-life
products to original “as-good-as-new” condition in a manufacturing
environment. Remanufacturing has been accepted by western world but India
is yet to take it up as an organized industrial sector. Remanufacturing industry
in India has huge potential for employment and wealth generation. But it
needs a new approach to the sector. In this paper, we will discuss about
industry approaches towards remanufacturing, its potential to grow in India
and technical challenges faced by the industry, environment and society.
Keywords: Remanufacturing, as – good - as new.
Remanufacturing is a form of product recovery process, where used and discarded
products/components/parts of equipment are subjected to a sequence of activities, so
as to convert them into the same as new condition. In remanufacturing, returns are
completely disassembled to parts/ components, thoroughly inspected, defective and
worn-out parts are repaired or replaced by new ones and then finally reassembled to
build up the remanufactured product. As far as quality is concerned, a remanufactured
item is ‘as-good-as-new’. Technological upgradations of some parts or modules are
also possible during the remanufacturing process (Dekker et al., 2000; Guide et al.,
2003). During Second World War many manufacturing facilities changed from
ordinary production to military production, thereby the remanufacturing industry got a
224 Nita Choudhary and Niranjan Kumar Singh
boost in order to keep society running. The concept of remanufacturing has spread
during the latest decades to sectors such as those dealing with automotive products
and components, electrical apparatus, toner cartridges, home appliances, machinery,
cellular phones (Sundin, 2004). Remanufacturing is a hot business opportunity
worldwide. The business of e-waste is the most lucrative and effective. As India is the
second most populated country in the world, a need was identified for
remanufacturing a decade ago. The country is still trying to tap into the vast potential
of the industry. Among various information technology products, recycled and
remanufactured imaging products were receiving maximum attention worldwide
when India decided to follow its peers. International players soon carved a niche and
turned it into their success story. Indian players, making a slow start, are yet to come
to terms with it and thus the industry is still in its infancy.
Literature Review
Remanufacturing in India is not in organized now a days. Without the policy, it is
unorganized. In India, EMD Locomotive Technologies Pvt. Ltd. is already practicing
remanufacturing concept on locomotive engines and getting various benefits (Sinha,
2009). GE is using remanufacturing for engines, Solar Turbines, Engineering and
Track Services (Nainar, 2009). Indian Railway is using remanufacturing for Engine
Block, Traction Motor Housing, Loco under frame, Bogie Frame at DMW, Patiala
(Chaudhary, 2009). Timken used remanufacturing for its valuable customer like Essar
Steel, Tinplate Company of India and Usha Martin and value created of $ 14,075, $
46,000 and $ 75,000 respectively as a direct saving (Gupta, 2009). Still less numbers
of corporate houses involved in remanufacturing as organized business sector like
Xerox ModiCorp Ltd., United Van der Horst Ltd., Timkin India Ltd., and few
cartridge refilling companies (Mukherjee, 2009). Cartridge World is one of the
world's largest retail chain selling remanufactured products through 1,500 franchise
outlets. The retailer has aggressive plans for India and targets to open 250 stores by
2010, of which seven are already operational.(Geetha, 2010). In India,
remanufacturing of cartridges are widely used. The size of the remanufacturing sector
in the United States is $53 billion, with over 70,000 _rms and 480,000 employees.
The average profit margin is estimated to exceed 20%. Throughout the world, the
total size of remanufacturing has reached more than $100 billion (Lund and Hausar,
Remanufacturing for Automotive/Earthmoving Sector
The automobile industry has the longest tradition in remanufacturing and is the most
important industry in the manufacturing market. The automotive product
remanufacturing accounts for two thirds of all remanufacturing and is a 53 billion
dollar industry in the USA alone and an at least 100 billion dollar industry throughout
the world. 10% of all cars and trucks require an engine replacement during their life.
OEMs and independent remanufacturers alike rework worn out or defective engines
back to their original equipment performance specifications, possibly even
Remanufacturing in India 225
incorporating state-of-the-art technology into these cores. About €120 million worth
of remanufactured products were sold in 2005 world wide. And 60 million pieces of
remanufactured products were produced (Steinhilper, 1998). Caterpillar is the market
leader for remanufacturing of earthmoving equipments.
Remanufacturing of Cartridge
Cartridge remanufacturing is a big business worldwide estimated around $35 billion,
contributing nearly 30 percent to the $115 billion worth printer cartridges sold
globally (Geetha, 2010). HP is the market leader in the area of cartridge
Remanufacturing of Electronic/Electronics Items, Home Appliances
Whirlpool is using remanufacturing technology. Many shops/showrooms are being
established in India for used electronic/electric equipments like Television, Mobile
Environmental Issue with remanufacturing in India
In the era of global climate change, when all countries have a moral duty to contribute
towards green environment, remanufactured products can reduce carbon emission and
provide better environmental safety to the nation and consumers.
Conventional manufacturing is unsustainable because of its significant adverse
environmental impacts. Manufacturing generates more than 60% of annual non-
hazardous waste and causes problems including pollution and shortages and therefore
high cost of landfill space and virgin materials (Winifred and Ijomah,2009).
Remanufacturing facilitates less consumption of energy and materials during
production, and reduce waste, thereby contributing to sound solid waste management
and environmental stewardship. Remanufacturing reduces Green House Gases, Raw
Material Use, Landfill Waste, Energy Use, Water Use.
The existing environmental legislations like Environment (Protection Rules), 1986
– Rule 3A, Schedule VI, Annexure I, The Recycled Plastics Manufacture and Usage
Rules, 1999, The Batteries (Management and Handling) Rules, 2001- Rule 4 are Not
very compulsive/stringent (Mukharjee, 2009).
Technical Issue with remanufacturing in India
As the technology and product features are changing rapidly, here is a fast increase in
consumption of remanufactured products like Cars from M/s. Maruti True Values or
used car showrooms, Used motorcycles, Personal Computers, Mobile Phones, Home
appliances. Remanufacturing is labour-intensive, so cost of remanufacturing will be
less in India.
226 Nita Choudhary and Niranjan Kumar Singh
Technical Challenges
1. No specific market for remanufactured products in India
2. Relatively, there are few customers in the market
3. Customers may think remanufactured goods to be inferior. Mindset of people
is not like the western world.
4. Much expertise is not available in this area in India
5. Unforeseen demand fluctuations
6. Uncertainty lies in the timing, quantity and quality of returns
7. Managing the reverse logistics of remanufactured items are difficult. Due to
complex and costly reverse logistics system
8. Low acceptability of remanufactured product due to unawareness of its quality
and price.
Remanufacturing into current WTO negotiations
India needs to be alert on this issue. Remanufacturing can have tremendous impact on
India as it will affect severely its burgeoning industry and large-based consumers.
Before India makes any binding commitments in the WTO, the following issues need
to be clarified:-
1. A definition of remanufactured goods
2. Prevention of dumping
3. The presence of various non-tariff barriers (NTBs) such as import bans, higher
tariffs and fees, or stringent regulation, certification and inspection
requirements. It should not affect transfer of technology
4. Remanufactured goods should be defined in the Foreign Trade Policy
5. Effect of remanufacturing on domestic manufacturing
6. Environmental concern
Tremendous scope of remanufacturing is available in India as the move is towards
green environment manufacturing and sustainable growth but still much less corporate
houses involved in remanufacturing as organized business sector. So far India does
not have stringent policy for remanufacturing. Companies like BEML, L & T, Tata
Motors, Ashok Leyland, Maruti Suzuki etc. should come forward in this area.
RAILWAYS, ASSOCHAMNational Seminar on Remanufacturing, New Delhi
[2] Dekker, R., Van der Laan, E. and Inderfurth, K., 2000, ‘A review on inventory
control for joint manufacturing and remanufacturing’, In Conference in
Remanufacturing in India 227
Management and Control of Production & Logistics, IEEE, July 5-8, France,
[3] Geetha, N. 2010, Remanufacturing Growth,
[4] Guide, V.D.R.Jr. and Wassenhove, L.N.V., 2003, ‘Managing product returns
for remanufacturing’, In Guide, V.D.R.Jr. and Wassenhove, L.N.V., Business
Aspects of Closed-loop Supply Chains, Carnegie Mellon University Press,
Pittsburgh, PA .
[5] Gupta, S. 2009 The importance of Remanufactured Components in
Maintenance and Life Cycle Management, ASSOCHAM National Seminar on
Remanufacturing, New Delhi
[6] Lund, R. T. and Hausar, W.M. 2003, The remanufacturing industry: Anatomy
of a giant. Tech. rep., Boston University, Boston, MA
[7] Mukherjee, K. 2009 Redesigning the supply chain process , ASSOCHAM
National Seminar on Remanufacturing, New Delhi
[8] Nainar, A. 2009 The Global Remanufacturing Industry: Benefiting Consumers,
industry and the Environment, ASSOCHAM National Seminar on
Remanufacturing, New Delhi
[9] Nasre, N. and Varel, E. 1996. Lifecycle analysis and costing in an
environmentally conscious manufacturing environment. APICS
remanufacturing symposium proceedings, pp. 44–47, USA.
[10] Sinha, A. 2009, The Importance of Remanufactured Components in
Maintenance & Life Cycle Management, ASSOCHAM National Seminar on
Remanufacturing, 18 Sept., 2009, New Delhi
[11] Steinhilper. R., 1998, Remanufacturing-The Ultimate Form of Recycling,
Fraunhofer IRB Verlag, Stuttgart
[12] Sundin E., 2004, Product and Process Design for Successful Remanufacturing,
in Production Systems, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Linköping
University: Linköping, Sweden.
[13] Winifred L. Ijomah, 2009, Addressing decision making for remanufacturing
operations and design-for-remanufacture: International Journal of Sustainable
Engineering, Vol. 2, No. 2, pp. 91–102
... Due to uncertainties related to returns (e.g., timing, quality, quantity, disassembly and reassembly, homogeneity of product range), the collection function is challenged (Mukherjee and Mondal, 2009 [27]). In the same manner, the distribution function can potentially be affected when end users do not support remanufactured goods due to negative user perception and unawareness of its quality and price, to name a few (Choudhary and Singh, 2011 [28]; Serrano et al., 2013 [24]; Sharma et al., 2016 [29]). ...
... The adaptation and acceptance of remanufactured products by the secondary market in an area affect the distribution function of remanufactured goods. For instance, if the end consumers are not supportive of remanufactured goods, then the ability to distribute is negatively affected (Choudhary and Singh, 2011 [28]). As some customers are hesitant in accepting remanufactured products due to its negative perception on its quality (Sharma et al., 2016 [29]), it is of great importance to ensure the consumers' needs are fulfilled upon creating a network supporting the distribution center. ...
... The collection function of RL is challenged by uncertainties related to returns such as timing, quality, and quantity, and issues relevant to disassembly and reassembly like recovery rates and homogeneity of product range [2]. The distribution function of remanufactured goods, on the other hand, can be affected negatively if the end consumers do not support remanufactured goods and if there exists limited consumer acceptance [3,4,5]. ...
... This was argued by [11] that because of this gap, literature in remanufacturing and in related topics such as RL is still in its infancy state. While much attention has been paid to the strategies and implementation of remanufacturing practices, there is still a lot to do in developing countries [3,5]. ...
Conference Paper
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Strategic location of reverse logistics facilities enables organizations to obtain optimal performance. The planning of facility location entails consideration of multiple essential criteria rather than a single-criterion optimization. This paper develops a framework that identifies the critical criteria in a Philippine context for selecting a location for end-of-life product collection centre. This novel paper captures the complexity of determining interrelationships using decision making trial and evaluation laboratory (DEMATEL) under fuzzy conditions. This paper aids decision-makers to select separate location for collection through considering the established essential criteria. Economic considerations and government policies and regulations are determined to be the most influential over other category of criteria. The practical implications of this paper focus on organizing and improving the operations of the remanufacturing sector of the Philippines.
... In today's India, repairing and refurbishing may be declining but that is limited to certain electronics only as those are either beyond repairable or consumers lack time to get it done. Another case of CE practice is refilling of cartridges which allows to reuse the cartridges 2-3 times (Choudhary et al., 2011). For laser printers, the repair shops can replace parts such as ink drum, doctors' plate etc which increases the life of such cartridges upto 3 years. ...
E-waste has become an alarming issue worldwide, especially in developing countries. On the other hand, e-waste is a huge source of secondary raw materials. The term urban mining is synonymous with resource recovery from e-waste. India is the second largest generator of e-waste in the Asia continent and fourth largest in the world. The lion's share of the e-waste is handled by the informal sector in India, whereas there are nearly 312 registered e-waste recyclers who cannot operate at their full capacity. The e-waste management rules 2016 (amended in 2018) focuses on extended producer responsibility, whereas the draft national resource efficiency policy 2019 is focused on circular economy (CE) principles. India is known as the country that follows “unity in diversity” and this opens several opportunities to bring together stakeholders from diverse and allied industries to explore the possibilities of implementation of CE. This chapter explores the possibilities of CE implementation in India in the e-waste sector and addresses the issues and challenges though a proposed solution architecture. The findings from this chapter are expected to be helpful to the researchers and the relevant stakeholders.
... Moreover, reverse logistics channels are underdeveloped (Nita and Niranjan 2011;Vaishali et al. 2016). To encourage remanufacturing, India's government must intervene and make patent-protected remanufacturing technology available to medium-and smallsized enterprises. ...
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Rapid pace of natural resource depletion and environment deterioration is a cause of concern worldwide. Remanufacturing offers a promising option for reduction in the waste and the resources consumption. As a rapidly developing economy, China initiated remanufacturing efforts in the 1990s. While focusing on the evolution of remanufacturing in China, using a game theoretic setup, we analyze manufacturer and retailer's decisions to enter remanufacturing industry. Entry decisions are determined based on evolutionary stable strategies (ESS) for both parties in different phases of remanufacturing in China. The model uses replicator dynamic system to establish ESS. We find that a different ESS is suitable in different phase of evolution. As our model reveals, over time, additional new players have entered the industry. Finally, we conclude that remanufacturing industry in China is well prepared to increase its scale and help alleviate the concerns of waste and environment deterioration. This could be primarily attributed to the government policies, subsidies, and incentives that have played an important role in kick-starting the industry. To verify theoretical results, a case study was conducted involving a prominent manufacturer and retailer. Based on the mathematical findings and case analysis, we make several suggestions for government policymakers, practitioners, and enterprises to enable additional companies enter the market and increase the scale of remanufacturing.
... However, there has not been any known national definition of remanufacturing and doubts are issued on the danger of the increase of dumping if laws in favor of remanufacturing are passed. Some remanufacturing ventures in the fields of copy machines, white goods, industrial bearings, ink cartridges, machinery, railway are showing effective application of remanufacturing in India [33]. However, Sharma et al. judge the current state of the industry lagging as compared to the potential of India as a remanufacturing market and identified customer quality concerns, the absence of a standardized process and lack of governmental support as main roadblocks for the expansion of remanufacturing in India [34]. ...
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In the context of resource constraints and the negative environmental and social impacts of the linear “take-make-dispose” pattern, remanufacturing offers a promising solution for the transformation of end of life (EOL) goods into products with equal or superior specifications and lifetime as compared with newly produced goods. The increasing success of this new industrial paradigm results from the possible combination of production costs reduction and profit maximization as well as efforts to increase environmental performance and harvest social benefits, such as job creation. However, a large number of countries faces challenges in building a valuable process because of the lack of communication between public and private stakeholder and the remanufacturing industry.
This paper addresses the optimization of make-to-order hybrid manufacturing - remanufacturing system to make capacity and inventory decisions jointly along with production decisions. The proposed system considers a common production facility and the same assembly/disassembly line to perform manufacturing and remanufacturing operations simultaneously. The current study takes into account an environment where new and remanufactured (reman) products competing to each other that is, the common demand stream for both products but different selling prices. Furthermore, the relative capacity consumed by remanufacturing over the manufacturing is explained in two ways, namely less capacity intensive case and more capacity intensive case. Differently, from previous studies, we consider a scenario with a discounted selling price for reman products, shortage penalty costs, lost sales, disposal and uncertainty in demand, amount and yield of returns. Hence, to handle those uncertainties, a scenario-based stochastic programming model in a two-stage setting is presented. In the first stage, the raw material inventory and production capacity levels are planned and in the second stage, the production, inventory and disposal decisions are determined by balancing overage and underage costs. The results indicate that net values associated with new and reman products can be decisive in choosing either manufacturing or remanufacturing.
Remanufacturing is a life cycle renewal process that is recognized as one of the most effective green strategies to attain sustainable manufacturing. The purpose of this paper is to address the current challenges confronting by Malaysian remanufacturing industries and to explore its future opportunities. The research technique of this study is based on extensive scholarly literature review and scenario analysis in the field of remanufacturing. The findings highlighted five main challenges and two main future opportunities in Malaysian remanufacturing industries. The results based on scenario analysis suggested that Malaysia possessed the potential to become the center hub of automotive components remanufacturing and novel entire vehicle remanufacturing (rebuilt vehicle) in the Southeast Asia region by overcoming its current challenges. This study has shown that the challenges and opportunities in Malaysia remanufacturing industries are significantly different from the developed countries due to its distinctive business environments. The outcome of this study is to ensure the smooth implementation of the National Remanufacturing Policy and facilitate the sustainable development of remanufacturing industries in Malaysia and other developing countries with a similar business environment.
The objective of this study is to identify and prioritize the performance outcomes (POs) due to adoption of SC remanufacturing critical success factors (CSFs). CSFs and the POs realized due do SC remanufacturing adoption, are identified based on past relevant literature analysis and subsequent discussions with the expert decision panel. This research work propose a hybrid solution methodology namely fuzzy Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) and fuzzy Technique for Order Performance by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS), to prioritize the POs realized due to adoption of SC remanufacturing CSFs. Fuzzy AHP technique is used to obtain the relative weights of the CSFs by performing pair wise comparison amongst the criteria, while fuzzy TOPSIS is used to prioritize the POs due to adoption of SC remanufacturing CSFs. Further, the proposed methodological framework is applied to an Indian manufacturing organization to demonstrate its applicability, and prioritize the POs realized due to adoption of SC remanufacturing CSFs. The study presents more accurate, structured and systematic approach to the organization for improving its POs step-by-step through adoption of SC remanufacturing CSFs, thus increasing its sustenance capability. The impact of vagueness in the criterion weights on the prioritization is also investigated.
The contemporary manufacturing scenario witnesses the adoption of lean remanufacturing concepts in a concerted manner. Lean remanufacturing is a newly evolved manufacturing process concerned with manufacturing and remanufacturing of products to effectively utilise available energy and resources, while reducing wastes in the process and thereby increasing efficiency. The advantages include process streamlining coupled with end-of-life decisions. A structural model needs to be developed to clarify the interrelationships among factors influencing lean remanufacturing practices. In this study, interpretive structural modelling method has been used to develop the structural model depicting interrelationships and most dominant and least dominant factors. Twenty factors are being identified based on expert opinion from 35 Indian automotive component remanufacturing organisations. The identified most dominant factors include a strong top management commitment with proper strategy selection, long-term vision and participation and a strong understanding of the current product and process designs. MICMAC analysis has been conducted to categorise the factors. The inferences based on the study have been derived. The novel aspect of this study is that it presents the development of structural model to identify the most dominant factors influencing the implementation of lean remanufacturing principles.
The growing environmental burden of a ‘throw-away-society’ has made apparent the need for alternatives to landfilling and incineration of waste. Opportunities have been sought to reintegrate used products and materials into industrial production processes. Recycling of waste paper and scrap metal have been around for a long time. Collection and reuse of packages and recovery of electronic equipment are more recent examples. Efforts to efficiently reuse products and/or materials have introduced a wide range of novel and complex issues that affect the complete supply chain of recoverable products. Supply chain management in the light of product reuse is what we refer to as ‘Reverse Logistics Management’.
Remanufacturing is a process of returning a used product to at least original equipment manufacturer original performance specification from the customers' perspective and giving the resultant product a warranty that is at least equal to that of a newly manufactured equivalent. This paper explains the need to combine ecological concerns and economic growth and the significance of remanufacturing in this. Using the experience of an international aero-engine manufacturer it discusses the impact of the need for sustainable manufacturing on organisational business models. It explains some key decision-making issues that hinder remanufacturing and suggests effective solutions. It presents a peer-validated, high-level design guideline to assist decision-making in design in order to support remanufacturing. The design guide was developed in the UK through the analysis of selections of products during case studies and workshops involving remanufacturing and conventional manufacturing practitioners as well as academics. It is one of the initial stages in the development of a robust design for remanufacture guideline.
The importance of Remanufactured Components in Maintenance and Life Cycle Management
  • S Gupta
Gupta, S. 2009 The importance of Remanufactured Components in Maintenance and Life Cycle Management, ASSOCHAM National Seminar on Remanufacturing, New Delhi
2009 Redesigning the supply chain process
  • K Mukherjee
Mukherjee, K. 2009 Redesigning the supply chain process, ASSOCHAM National Seminar on Remanufacturing, New Delhi
The Global Remanufacturing Industry: Benefiting Consumers, industry and the Environment
  • A Nainar
Nainar, A. 2009 The Global Remanufacturing Industry: Benefiting Consumers, industry and the Environment, ASSOCHAM National Seminar on Remanufacturing, New Delhi
The Importance of Remanufactured Components in Maintenance & Life Cycle Management Remanufacturing-The Ultimate Form of Recycling
  • A Sinha
Sinha, A. 2009, The Importance of Remanufactured Components in Maintenance & Life Cycle Management, ASSOCHAM National Seminar on Remanufacturing, 18 Sept., 2009, New Delhi [11] Steinhilper. R., 1998, Remanufacturing-The Ultimate Form of Recycling, Fraunhofer IRB Verlag, Stuttgart
Remanufacturing Growth
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Geetha, N. 2010, Remanufacturing Growth, =355&Itemid=78
The remanufacturing industry: Anatomy of a giant
  • R T Lund
  • W M Hausar
Lund, R. T. and Hausar, W.M. 2003, The remanufacturing industry: Anatomy of a giant. Tech. rep., Boston University, Boston, MA