Closing the loop: the Recycling Station trial
Recycling is a big deal for us at ecostore – we cut down on waste wherever we can and we use a mix of recycled and recyclable materials for our packaging.
Last year we introduced Carbon Capture™ Paks – bottles made from renewable sugarcane plastic that not only help lower your carbon footprint by using a crop that draws CO2 from that atmosphere, they’re also 100% recyclable. But we don’t want the story to end when people put our bottles in the recycling bin. We want to close the loop on the recycling system with packaging that can be re-used time and again.
We were excited to be part of The Recycling Station, a joint initiative between ecostore, Anchor, Tip Top and Piako to collect the plastic you use every day and recycle it into new products.
Under the initiative people could drop ecostore bottles in to the station to be collected and recycled to make new ecostore bottles or laundry scoops. People could also drop off their Anchor milk bottles, Tip Top ice cream containers and Piako yoghurt tubs.
Closing the recycling loop to turn plastic waste into new products has been a long held goal of ours. We love the idea of plastic that can be re-processed many times, because it means we can cut down on packaging made each time from scratch. Re-use also means we can keep the CO2 that’s stored in the Carbon Capture™ Paks and not lose the energy and inputs that went into the first production process – a better option than biodegradable plastic. And it’s a way to lower greenhouse gas emissions, preserve resources and reduce waste and pollution even further.
Ultimately our vision is for companies globally to design their products and supply chains with lifecycle and re-use in mind, and for every consumer to treat packaging as an item for continuous reinvention.
“At ecostore we are passionate about New Zealanders’ health, wellbeing and environmental sustainability,” our CEO Malcolm Rands says. “All our ecostore products are recyclable throughout New Zealand but the benefit we see from being involved in this programme is that we can get our bottles back and recycle them directly into new ecostore bottles or laundry scoops. This is our hope for a sustainable world where all consumer products are created, used and recycled in a closed loop system. We need to keep materials engaged in a circular way, rather than used once and turned into waste.”
Two portable stations moved around sites in Northland, Auckland and the Bay of Plenty over four to six months, starting with Pyes Pa School in Tauranga and Wakaaranga School in Pakuranga, Auckland (pictured above and below). The stations were at each site for six weeks and open during school hours.