How It Works

TerraCycle is a highly-awarded and globally recognized recycling company that develops zero waste solutions for difficult-to-recycle waste streams.

To participate in the Zero Waste System, you must first select the waste streams you would like to recycle. Not sure which Zero Waste Box is right for you? We created a short quiz to help you pick the box that will best fit your recycling goals.

The waste is collected through our Zero Waste System and is then sorted and repurposed into affordable, innovative products instead of being sent to landfill. Read the information below for specific information on each type of waste and how it is recycled.

METALS |  Metals are separated by specific type and smelted into ingots for re-use.

PLASTICS | Plastics are separated by number and melted down. From there, most of our plastics are turned into small pellets that can be molded and extruded into unique shapes and products.

ORGANICS | Organics are used in industrial and commercial fertilizers.

FIBERS | Fibers will be hydropulped to separate out coatings (like wax and plastics). The separated fiber will be recycled into new paper products, or composted if recycling is not possible. The resulting plastics will be recycled into plastic polymers.

FABRICS | Fabrics are separated by material and are recycled, upcycled, or re-used as appropriate.

GLASS | Glass is cleaned and sorted by color for processing. It is then crushed and melted to be used in new glass products or other applications.

E-WASTE | E-waste is mechanically and manually separated into metals and plastics. Any salvageable e-waste is refurbished and re-used. All data is completely wiped from applicable e-waste, but we ask that you restore your device to factory settings prior to sending in.

COOKING OIL | The cooking oils we collect will be consolidated by our brand partner American By-Products Recyclers who will then turn it into biodiesel or mechanical lubricants.

CIGARETTE WASTE | Cigarette waste is shredded and separated into plastics, papers, and organics.

LATEX PAINTS | The latex paint is separated into water and solids, which are then run through an extruder. The water is stripped from the materials as water vapor and the solids are melted and formed into pellets. The pellets can be used as a base for colorants or as additives to other recycled polymers.


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