Recycled materials are not truly recycled until we reuse them. The materials that we recycle do not truly benefit the environment until a demand is created for them. You can increase the demand by using your purchasing power. Be an environmental shopper!
Most importantly, buying recycled turns waste into a useful resource for making other products and diverts waste from our landfills. So close the loop and buy recycled!
Definitions of Terms on Product Packaging
Here are a few terms you may encounter.
Pre-consumer waste: This includes the paper scraps, overruns, and misprints from the manufacturer. These fibers are reused to produce new paper. It does not include any material from household or commercial recycling programs.
Post-consumer waste: These materials have all been produced, sold, consumed, and collected. Anything you recycle at home or at work is included in this category. Using these materials helps promote recycling programs by creating a market for our recyclables. In order for recycling programs to continue, we as consumers must purchase products with at least some post-consumer waste.
Recyclable: The word "recyclable" simply means that the product can be recycled. If you see this on packaging, it does not mean that the product is made of recycled materials.
Check for the recycle symbol on the following products:
Businesses can have a large effect on the recycling market by creating demand for recycled material. Therefore, it is critical for governments and businesses to establish programs to buy recycled products. Buying recycled has several benefits:
Examples of Recycled Materials:
There are many possible items your business or organization can purchase that are made from recycled material ranging from office supplies to retreaded tires. Here is a list of some of them: