Gwen Leron: 50 Shades of Green


A Unique Way to Recycle and Upcycle Your Trash

What to do with your non-recyclable and hard-to-recycle trash

A Unique Way To Recycle and Upcycle Your Trash

Each time I have a piece of trash to throw out, it ends up in one of four places: the compost bin, the paper product recycling bin, the plastic recycling bin, or the trash. But there are times when I have something and I'm not quite sure where it should go because I'm not certain it can be recycled. Is this for the paper bin? The plastic bin?!...

In comes TerraCycle.

"TerraCycle is a highly-awarded, international upcycling and recycling company that collects difficult-to-recycle packaging and products and repurposes the material into affordable, innovative products. TerraCycle is widely considered the world’s leader in the collection and reuse of non-recyclable, post-consumer waste."

Here's what TerraCycle is all about:

So basically, you collect and send your non-recyclable or hard to recycle trash to TerraCycle and they will recycle or upcycle it into park benches, backpacks, shopping bags, and more. They collect all types of trash—from MP3 Players, to candy wrappers, to laptops.

See all of the types of trash TerraCycle is currently accepting.

So how do you get your trash to TerraCycle so they can repurpose them? The best part is that there is no cost to participate in their programs. Just sign-up for an account and choose the types of trash you will be collecting. When the box you are collecting the trash in is filled, download a free shipping label and ship it off to TerraCycle. Once they receive it, they will credit your account with points. TerraCycle points can be redeemed for a variety of charitable gifts, or donated to a non-profit organization or school of your choice.

Pretty easy, right? This can be done at your home as a family, in classrooms, and even with co-workers in an office. It's is such a great way to teach your kids about upcycling and the importance of not just mindlessly throwing things away. It's always a good idea to have a thought process involved when deciding how to dispose of a hard to recycle product. When those times come when you can't decide, check with TerraCycle to see if they will accept it.