Plastic film recovery is a recycling frontier filled with promise of economic and environmental benefits. For moderate material generators, single-stream recycling is the only available system; plastic film is a contaminant in single-stream recycling as it wraps around separation equipment. Large film generators bale the valuable material for sale in the commodities market with prices that rival corrugated cardboard.
The Elemental Impact Team is developing a city-wide plastic film recovery template with Atlanta serving as the pilot city. FreshPoint, the nation's largest produce distributor, stepped forward as the lead Pioneer in the pilot. A first action step was installing a mini baler at the FB Atlanta distribution center to bale the film generated in their operations. This video gives an overview of the pilot along with the steps taken to create new practices to collect film for contaminant-free bales.
For a pilot overview, visit the following Zero Waste in ACTION Blog articles:
- If it was easy, it would already be done (zerowastezone.blogspot.com/2013/09/if-it-was-easy-it-would-already-be-done.html) - introduces the pilot & details challenges.
- Plastic Film Recycling: A New Frontier (zerowastezone.blogspot.com/2014/01/plastic-film-recycling-new-frontier.html) - gives Ei plastic film history along with a pilot update.
Ei works with a stellar team, who brings the possible out of impossible:
- FreshPoint, takes the lead Pioneer role
- M-PASS Environmental, provides the pilot infrastructure including training, bale collection & material sale.
- Orwak, provides the test baler during the trial period.
- Hilex Poly, advises on how to maximize plastic film bale value; plastic film purchaser once bales are aggregated by the tractor trailer load.
THANK YOU to the Ei Team!!!!