Although recycling doesn’t address the root problem (production of packaging in the first place), it certainly has its role to play. When reducing or reusing isn’t an option, it’s important to know how to properly recycle packaging waste.
6. Educate yourself, friends and family
One of the problems inherent in the packaging crisis is the lack of knowledge about recycling programs. Sure, most people know that their city has a recycling program, but do you know what can and cannot be recycled? It can be more complicated than you think, especially since the rules are different from city to city. Disposing of waste incorrectly can cause problems after it is collected and being processed by clogging up machinery. To prevent this confusion, the city may further limit the types of waste it will collect to be recycled. This is a great video that explains which kinds of plastic can be recycled.
Once you work out your local waste disposal system, make sure your friends and family are also aware. Talking about the problem will help more people stop and consider their waste footprint. It is especially important that children are taught why it is important to properly recycle waste so that future generations understand that the environment isn’t disposable.
7. Choose brands that offer recycling programs
Unlike companies that will simply refill containers, there are many more brands that will collect packaging waste, then process and reform it. Although this isn’t quite as efficient as reusing, some of these companies will also collect packaging from brands other than their own, which is why it needs to be reformed. These programs usually offer consumer incentives like free products, discounts, and gift cards after a certain number of items are returned for recycling. Just some of the cosmetics companies that offer recycling programs include MAC, Lush, Aveda, Garnier, and Kiehl’s.
We encourage consumers and companies alike to step back and consider the question: Where Does It Go?
How will you reduce your waste footprint? Let us know on Twitter by tagging @FocalPoint_Inc and using #WhereDoesItGo. You can join the discussion on Facebook by going to our “Where Does It Go” event page.
And as for me- my goals this year are to transition to completely waste free food shopping, stop using disposable straws, stop using wrapping paper, and switch to solid shampoo and conditioner bars. What are your goals?
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Focal Point Research Inc. We are industry leading Packaging Development Consultants that you can trust to help guide your company in the right direction.