Retail-Ready Recycling

by Todd McDonald on October 18, 2013

We’ve all seen them before. The receptacles by the grocery store exit for used plastic bags, the bin at they eye doctors for old eyeglasses even the used phone kiosks at the mall. And many of us are also familiar with less obvious recycling collection efforts such as ink and toner cartridge return programs at office supply stores.

While this movement of in-store recycling may have started slowly, the trend is now starting to gain traction.

In fact, as Tom Szaky puts it in his recent Packaging Digest article, “Are consumers ready to dispose of their waste at retail stores?” today’s consumers have clearly become more eco-aware which is creating a demand for retailers to place collections in their stores. But, as the title of Szaky’s article begs, are consumers really ready to take their recycling to the next step?

How many times have you walked by a collection bin and thought to yourself, next time, I’ll bring those plastic bags, that pair of unused eyeglasses, that old iPhone with me. But do you? If not, can you really see yourself gathering up packaging waste and bringing it back to the store?

At TEQ we believe the key to success for any such program is eliminating inefficiency, much like the approach we take to supply chain network management. In other words, facilitating on-the-spot recycling through packaging design can help avoid the transport of packaging back and forth from store to home to store, much like developing a workflow to maximize the deliveries and shipments of web scrap, pallets and roll cores made by dedicated trucks helped to streamline the production of ear thermometer covers for for a global leader of healthcare devices.

Solving packaging design challenges like this are at the heart of what we do here at TEQ.

What about you? What are other factors you think can help lead to the success of this growing “retail-ready” recycling movement?

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