Coles and Woolworths plastic recycling partner REDcycle stops operation and stores donated plastic

Coles and Woolworths plastic recycling partner REDcycle stops operation and stores donated plastic

One of Australia’s largest recycling programs has stored millions of soft plastics in a secret move that poses a potentially lethal fire risk.

REDcycle, which has donation bins at thousands of Coles and Woolworths stores in Australia, stopped its recycling operations several months ago but continued to collect soft plastics.

The recycling program claims to collect up to five million pieces of plastic every day from supermarkets and other partners, including Australia Post.

The program’s collapse, revealed in the Sydney Morning Herald on Wednesday, casts a new shadow over recycling in Australia.

In a statement to Daily Mail Australia, REDcycle said it was storing the collected plastic in a warehouse and would continue to do so until operations restarted.

Soft plastic donation bins will disappear from Woolworths and Coles after their partner, REDcycle, ceased operations (a REDcycle bin at Coles is pictured)

Soft plastic donation bins will disappear from Woolworths and Coles after their partner, REDcycle, ceased operations (a REDcycle bin at Coles is pictured)

‘REDcycle made the decision to withhold the material in the short term, at great personal expense to the organization.’

“The REDcycle team has been working tirelessly behind the scenes to find other processing solutions and end markets. New potential opportunities present themselves every day, however, it will take time to put them into practice.”

The green-focused group prevents soft plastic from ending up in landfills or trash by reusing it through outsourced companies that can turn the plastic into additives for asphalt, concrete aggregates and furniture.

the Sydney Morning Herald reported how the company lost its partner Plastic Forests last February, which made garden planting kits from recycled materials.

But REDcycle’s real problems began five months ago after a fire at Close the Loop, the factory in charge of its operation that turns plastic into an asphalt additive.

To top it off, last week another of REDcycle’s partners stopped accepting plastic because it is in oversupply.

REDcycle collected 5 million pieces of plastic every day in bins at Coles, Woolworths and several other major retailers (a worker at Coles is pictured)

REDcycle collected 5 million pieces of plastic every day in bins at Coles, Woolworths and several other major retailers (a worker at Coles is pictured)

REDcycle said there are now no organizations operating in Australia that can recycle soft plastic.

Melbourne university student Lucinda Moje-O’Brien told the Sydney Morning Herald felt ‘betrayed’ that her donations to REDcycle were not reused as promised.

“As a consumer, I am taking the time to separate my waste and they are not holding up their end of the bargain,” he said.

Coles told Daily Mail Australia that he only “recently learned” of REDcycle’s cessation of recycling operations and therefore disposed of his donation bins.

“Due to industry-wide challenges with soft plastic recycling, all REDcycle soft plastic collections from stores will be halted until further notice,” a spokesperson said.

‘This means we will not be able to accept soft plastic recycling returns in Coles stores and via Coles Online at this time.

‘Sustainability is as important to Coles as it is to our customers and partners.

“We are committed to our Together for Zero Waste ambition and are working with government, industry and sustainability partners to find a long-term solution for recycling soft plastics in Australia.”

REDcycle reportedly did not tell Coles or Woolworths that it had stopped recycling soft plastics and instead began storing the donations in a warehouse (a REDcycle bin at Woolworths is pictured)

REDcycle reportedly did not tell Coles or Woolworths that it had stopped recycling soft plastics and instead began storing the donations in a warehouse (a REDcycle bin at Woolworths is pictured)

Woolworths said it was also “newly briefed” on the situation.

“REDcycle advised that it will no longer be able to collect soft plastic returned by customers from our stores, effective immediately,” it said in a statement to Daily Mail Australia.

“Sadly, this means that customers will not be able to recycle their household soft plastic in our stores until collections can resume or an alternative solution is found.

“We are disappointed by this situation. We sincerely apologize to our customers and are working to return access to soft plastic recycling as soon as possible.”

Woolworths said it is now considering working with other recycling companies.

REDcycle said on its website that it is struggling to keep up with the growing number of soft plastic donations.

“Consumer recycling of soft plastic has grown exponentially in recent years, with a 350% increase in returned plastic since 2019,” he said.

“In the short term, consumers are encouraged to dispose of their soft plastics in their household trash bin.”

Between 2017 and 2020, several fires were reported at recycling plants with large plastic warehouses in Australia.

The Kilburn plastics factory erupted in a massive fire in November 2020, causing widespread panic over the serious health effects of toxic fumes.

Residents in the region of the fire, which caused $1 million worth of damage, were told to close their windows as toxins from burning plastic are known to cause cancer, as well as respiratory and thyroid problems in people and animals. .

RECYCLING PARTNERS

Abbott’s Village Bakery

fit food

ACCO Brands

Adelie Fine Foods

AFGC

aldi supermarkets

complete packaging

Amcor

Andrew Kohn

by Arnott

Asaleo Care

AusPouch

Australia Post

Australian Packing Pact

Bailey’s Fertilizer

Peak and Johnston

Bega cheese

Brownie Bellarino

Billabong

BioFlex (Bulk Nutrients)

Biogone

Biozet Attack

Birch and Waite

bird’s eye

Blackmores

blue print

blue scope

Captivity

Brown’s Dairy

Bulla Dairy

BWX

canningvale

carmans kitchen

Caspak

change of habits

Chobani

Organic Blades

close the loop

Cobram Estate Olives

cobs

coffee stroke

supreme coffee

cabbages

Continental

cove cleaning

Cripps

Cyclone

david jones

dc shoes

d&d mail

DHUWA Coffee

diego

Double D

organic barista

Ecolean

eggs

EGO Pharmacy

Emporia

endote

Evergreen Garden Care

Fantastic Furniture

farm food

Feed for Thought

Fenn Foods

flexo pack

Fonterra

FPS pack

Huhtamaki

Lenswood Apples

natural

Office work

packaging laboratory

Father Coffee

pure paleo

pataks

fresh perfection

pedros

plastic forests

popcorn man

Propak Industries

Proper French Fries

Pure Harvest

Quiksilver

Quilton

Quorn

Tassal

tasty

Tata Global Beverages

the stockbroker

the naked bird

The best brand

The packing people

Tibaldi

Better advice

toby’s estate

Trentham Estate

Tropeaka

natural tucker

general mills

get move

GFA

Glad

international globe

GMD Packaging

good morning cereal

good gardener

gourmet delight

Green Skin Wine

Greenigo

Griffiths Bros coffee roasters

coffee grinders

happy road

hellofresh

Beehive and Wellness

hugs

Huon Aquaculture

Integrated Packaging

Jalna

hifi jb

cowboys west

JMP Holdings

Johnson and Johnson

jordans cereal

J-tech systems

Kaboodle

kao

Kathmandu

Kellogg’s

Kimberly-Clark

KM packing

Kmart

Koko Coffee Roasters

Krehalon

Lactalis Australia (Parmalat)

Laucke Flour Mills

left

Lion

LONGDA Group China

marley spoon

Mars

McCORMICK Foods

McPherson’s

Method

trans lady kitchen

Nestle

nylex

only organic

inner spirit

potato packaging

cousin

Rafferty’s Garden

real food

real pet food

RED group

Replacement

ResMed

Richgro

rival

Robert Menz

roll pack

Australia

rvca

Ryvita

Schur

contained air

7 Eleven

Sancell

Sanatorium

Saputo Dairy

sensitivity

Sheridan

Stamp

smith’s pepsico

Snackbrands Australia

Soft plastic recycling in New Zealand

Staughton Group

Australian sugar

Sun ray

SunRice

sweet nutrients

T2

Goal

thermogard

enjoy the latest

Unicharm (Baby Love)

vegetable chips

Venetian coffee

vexel

vitality marks

Live Packaging

AVA Australia

Woolworth’s

by yumi

zamipet

ziploc

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