Kelowna business taking plastics from the public to recycle into new products

 

A new way to recycle

The Rogerie has grown by rescuing plastics directly from landfills and transforming them into 100 per cent renewable products.

But starting Monday, the local business will start accepting clean household plastics from the public. Things like HTP (high technology plastic) or PETG (Polyethylene terephthalate glycol, a food-safe plastic) will be accepted and turned into new products. All you have to do is bring your washed plastics to their location at 103-460 Doyle Avenue, and they’ll do the rest.

“We’ll take it, wash it a second time to make sure it’s really clean, and then we’ll grind it up and use it in our injection molding machine,” said Angela Rogers, the co-founder of The Rogerie.

Currently Angela and her husband Brady sell products such as various planter pots, cups, stemless wine glasses, mugs and teapots and kitchen composters. Angela says the idea to start this business all came to fruition after their wedding.

“We knew we wanted to do something creative, and it was actually after our wedding that we saw how much plastic we had accumulated from gifts and moving so we knew we wanted to do something with it all. We got a little 3D printer that Brady had, and he designed a little planter and we took it to the farmers market. We received a ton of positive reactions and it kind of just grew from there,” said Angela.

The Rogerie previously operated a pop-up location at Orchard Park for six weeks last year, but have now found a permanent home at the downtown Innovation Centre.

Angela mentioned that they have several products in the works that they are putting the final touches on, and to keep an eye out for them this summer. You can see the 3D printers in action starting next week at the store when they add a dozen machines.

How to Recycle (Extra) Household Items

Image: New Africa / Shutterstock.com

When you combine the popularity of decluttering and organizing shows with a lot of time spent at home, it’s no surprise that people are realizing they have too much stuff. And while the first step of decluttering can be a hurdle, it can be even tougher to figure out what to do with all those extra belongings. Especially if you want to be environmentally friendly and not send it all to a landfill. But there are ways to recycle excess household items; it just might take a bit of extra work.

Both recycling and manufacturing require many resources, so the best option is to find a way to reuse an item. This keeps it out of the landfill and also eliminates the need for a new product to be made. But if you can’t give an object new life, it’s time to look for recycling options. To save you some time and legwork, we’ve researched the best ways to reuse or recycle household items other than your everyday plastics, papers, metals and glass:

How to Recycle Old Clothes

Luckily, we have a lot of options when it comes to giving old clothes new life. If your clothes are in good condition, there are many charities and organizations that will gladly take them. But it’s the stained or damaged clothing that most people have a hard time figuring out what to do with.

If the item in question is something you like, but it needs repair, consider taking it to a tailor. You’d be surprised at how inexpensive it is to have a seam or zipper repaired. If the item is beyond repair, look for donation centers that take old textiles and reuse them for insulation or other purposes.

How to Recycle Electronics

After clothes, electronics are one of the items that we tend to replace most often. Unfortunately, old electronics can leak harmful toxins like mercury and lead into the environment if sent to a landfill. But they’re also filled with valuable resources such as glass, aluminum, gold, silver and copper, which can be recovered and recycled. Many electronic retailers now offer recycling programs that allow you to drop off old items for proper disposal.

But there are also programs that help bring electronics to schools and families in need. If your old electronics are still working, one of these programs is the best way to extend their life. You’ll be helping someone in need and keeping harmful waste out of a landfill.

How to Recycle Batteries

Batteries contain toxic materials that can leach into groundwater and should never be thrown in the trash. A variety of retailers now offer recycling programs where you can drop your batteries in a collection bin. If you can’t find a retailer offering battery recycling, look for a collection program or hazardous waste event in your area. And some manufacturers and recycling facilities also offer mail-in programs to help keep batteries out of the trash.

How to Recycle Books

In some areas, you can include books with your regular recycling. But many recyclers only accept paperback books and not hardcovers. So always check your local guidelines before placing any books in the recycling bin. But books are also one of the easiest items to pass on for reuse.

If you’re an avid reader and have many new and popular books, you can take them to a used bookstore and possibly even get a bit of money for them. Older books can be donated at most thrift stores, but you can also take them to your local library. Some libraries will add books to their collection, but most often, they are sold to raise funds for new books.

While recycling household items may take a bit more work, it is definitely worth keeping these items out of the landfill. Add these items to your recycling list to help reduce the amount of waste you create.

 
 

What Household Items Can and Can’t Be Recycled

 

We all want to do our part to help the planet. And we know that recycling helps reduce waste and redirects non-biodegradable items from already full landfills. But with so many different products and materials out there, it can be tricky to know what can and cannot be recycled. 

While restrictions and recycling capabilities will vary in different regions, there are some common rules when it comes to recycling. We’ve broken down your standard household recycling by category to help you sort it all out. This list of what to recycle and what to dispose of elsewhere will help you make the right recycling choices. 

Paper

There are a lot of different kinds of paper out there. And because paper is so widely used, recycling as much paper as possible is important. While most paper can be ground back down into pulp and remade into new paper products, some types of paper can’t go in your recycling bin. Here are the details:

DO Recycle These Paper Products Whenever Possible

Computer paper, notepaper, magazines, newspapers, flyers, phonebooks, mail, plain gift wrap and greeting cards (no embellishments), paper bags, cereal and snack boxes, cardboard boxes (shipping, moving, packing, etc.)

Do NOT Recycle These Paper Items

Food soiled paper products including napkins, tissues, paper towels, paper plates, pizza and take-out boxes. Shredded paper, wax or parchment paper, plastic or foil-coated cardboard (freezer or microwave safe packaging), take-out beverage cups, foil or glitter gift wrap, books.

Metals

Household food and drink containers made of aluminum, steel and tin are almost all recyclable. This includes pop cans, food cans, clean aluminum foil as well as aluminum pie plates. In most areas, empty aerosol cans are also recyclable but remember to remove the plastic lid. Always clean food containers before putting them in the bin, so food waste does not contaminate other recycling.

You can’t put larger household metals such as toys, pots and pans, utensils and baking sheets in the recycling. And construction materials must always be disposed of safely at an approved facility.

Glass

When it comes to glass, a pretty safe rule is if it holds food, it’s recyclable. This includes glass jars that contain spreads and condiments, soft drink and beer bottles, as well as wine and liquor bottles.

Most other types of glass do not go in the recycling bin. Glass and ceramic dinnerware and baking dishes, drinking glasses, vases and mirrors vases should go to the donation center or carefully thrown away if broken. Lightbulbs do not go in regular recycling, but they can be recycled at an appropriate recycling facility.

Plastics

Here’s where things start to get a little more confusing. There are a LOT of different plastics out there and none of them are good for the planet. And unfortunately, not all of them are recyclable. Generally, all plastic beverage bottles and any plastic food containers with lids are recyclable. To further break down which plastics can and cannot go in the bin, verify what is accepted in your area.

Most plastics will have a recycling symbol and a number on them that lets you know what kind of plastic the item is made of. Plastics with a #1 or #2 on them are almost always recyclable, while plastics #3 – #6 may not be accepted in all areas. Plastic #7 is one of the most challenging plastics to recycle and has only recently been added to some recycling centers.

These Items NEVER Go in the Recycling Bin

Then there are some items that you think should go in the bin, but they are never recyclable. And it turns out that not putting non-recyclable items in the recycling bin is just as important as putting the right things in. Some non-recyclables can actually taint the good recycling and redirect a whole batch of recycling to the landfill.

Plastic bags often require special collection and processing equipment that most areas don’t offer. And they pose a big problem when people put them in the recycling as they take extra work to remove. Plastic cutlery and plastic straws are also not recyclable though many people think they are.  And no polystyrene (Styrofoam) containers are recyclable. It’s best to avoid these products if possible.

Doing your part to help reduce waste and improve recycling practices saves the planet and saves time and money for your city or municipality. For more information on what can and can’t be recycled, please refer to the guidelines in your area.