Being a regular recycler makes you a raw material supplier. Recyclables are a raw material. A manufacturer has to find value in the material you place at curbside for recycling or place in the Macon County drop off recycling boxes. Your recycling material is competing with raw materials in the marketplace. If bottles and cans aren’t rinsed out, if there is food residue in containers and if the wrong material is placed into recycling containers, the cost to recycle those material rises. Remember “When in Doubt, Leave it Out!
The reasons for recycling remain the same. Recycling creates jobs, reduces greenhouse gas emissions, conserves resources and reduces water and air pollution. However, what has changed is the fluctuating commodity prices, the cost of fuel, wages and benefits for the employees and the overwhelming contamination found in recycling containers. When a recycler has to invest additional money to remove all the material placed in recycling containers that doesn’t belong or is contaminated, recycling as an industry becomes less viable in the marketplace.
We all can support the recycling process by being a better raw material supplier to keep recycling viable. Recyclables are competing with virgin raw materials and the raw materials are winning the race in many instances. Remember to rinse it out and when in doubt leave it out.