A question we are often asked by our collectors is “the waste for these two programs is similar, can I just ship it all together in one box?”.
We know this can be a bit confusing, so we are here to explain why you need to ship waste for different programs in separate boxes and with separate shipping labels.
It would be fair to assume that all your coffee capsules could be shipped in one big box to TerraCycle to be recycled, but there are a few reasons why they need to be sorted by recycling program.
Different types of waste
Even though waste may often look similar, it is actually made from different materials and needs to be processed in different ways. To use coffee capsules as an example: the capsules accepted in the NESCAFÉ® Dolce Gusto® Capsule Recycling Program are plastic, while the capsules accepted in the L’OR, Moccona & illy Capsules Recycling Program are made from aluminium and the capsules you can recycle through the Roast and Return Coffee Capsule Composting Program are compostable.
Because of these differences in material and processing requirements, a mixed bag containing all of these capsules could not be recycled together. If you were to send in a shipment which was highly contaminated with waste not accepted in the program it may not be able to be recycled at all.
Programs sponsored by different brands
The second reason why waste needs to be sorted by recycling program is the cost of recycling. The reason why we are able to provide free recycling programs to our collectors is because brands pay for the cost of recycling the waste collected through their program. The way this works is that when a shipment arrives at TerraCycle it is weighed, the shipping label is scanned and the brand who sponsors that waste stream is billed accordingly.
Because of this, even though the Seven Miles coffee pods recycling program and the NESCAFÉ® Dolce Gusto® Capsule Recycling Program both accept plastic coffee capsules, the waste needs to be sent in separate boxes, with the correct shipping label on each to ensure we can correctly bill the brands.
Coffee capsules provide a great example of how this system works, but these principles apply to all of our free recycling programs. By separating your waste by recycling program and ensuring that it has the correct shipping label, you are reducing contamination and helping us to make the recycling process as efficient as possible. Which in turn helps us to provide recycling solutions for complex waste to more Australians and Kiwis. Follow the steps below to make sure your shipment is the kind that puts a smile on the TerraCycle team’s faces.
- Check the accepted waste for the program and make sure the waste you have matches.
- Print out a shipping label for each recycling program you are sending in waste for.
- Check that the waste in the box has the correct shipping label affixed. Our free shipping labels all look similar so we suggest printing them one at a time to avoid mix ups.
- Send off your waste!
If you are using a Community Collection Hub to recycle it is still important to separate your waste and drop it into the correct collection box. We don’t want the wonderful individuals and businesses who collect on behalf of their community to have to re-sort the waste, which may deter them from collecting more waste streams or continuing to be a Hub.
If you have any questions about sorting and shipping your waste you can always get in touch with our team at 1800 983 324 or through our website.