A pulled hamstring too far for WRAP?
One thing is for sure - Liz Goodwin is putting a brave face on today's announcement that her organisation bore perhaps the biggest brunt of cuts, waste-wise, in this year's Spending Review.
This is not looking good for those who strive so hard, each and every day, to push forward the resource management agenda. It must sometimes feel like struggling with a big boulder up an even bigger hill.
I remember the days when it was fair to say that WRAP had too much money at its disposal. It flouted serious cash on numerous PR agencies, making external communications a bothersome affair to negotiate for many an editor.
But then, Liz Goodwin was drafted in. She reorganised WRAP's comms into a much slicker affair and it became a quieter, but much more efficient outfit. In the past two years in particular, I have admired much of what WRAP has achieved: in bringing big business together, in facilitating platforms for dialogue, in encouraging the waste industry to clamber outside of its traditional disposal box.
WRAP's work in driving the case for a circular economy is incredibly valuable. The organisation has not only backed our own Resource Revolution campaign which strives to drive forward this agenda, but helped us with disseminating the outputs to a wider audience. If WRAP is a quango to some, well hand on heart, it is one of the best quangos I have ever come across.
I truly hope that despite the brutal nature of Defra's axe - a 40% cut to WRAP's budget over the next 18 months - Goodwin and her team will be able to pull off some miracle working so that its work around resource efficiency and the circular economy isn’t compromised too much.
It does seem the way forward for WRAP is to start securing alternative means of funding. The private sector here could play a useful role in supporting some of the organisation's remit, since WRAP works so closely with big corporations through voluntary agreements like the Courtauld Commitment.
On a wider level, such financial squeezing is bound to have implications further down the line for the industries and sectors that WRAP serves. No doubt this was a tough decision for Defra; WRAP has been one of its most loyal and informative servants. Fingers crossed this latest kicking doesn't knock the stuffing right out of it.maxine perella