Soft plastic waste now recyclable

Collection bins will gather items in new service introduced to Thames




Local News

Thames Coromandel District Council has teamed up with local businesses and recycling companies to bring a new service to help protect the district’s beautiful environment. Available initially just in Thames, locals can recycle soft plastic waste, such as bags and wrappers, in the new soft plastic recycling collection bins. The recycled soft plastic will then be turned into fence posts or building materials. “I’m very excited that we have this soft plastics recycling scheme on the peninsula,” says Thames ward councillor Robyn Sinclair. “Waste management is a big issue nationally and it’s an important issue for our district too. “This is one of a range of measures that can help safeguard our local and national environment from plastic pollution.” Lyn Mayes, The Packaging Forum’s Soft Plastic Scheme manager, says: “We are delighted to finally bring soft plastic recycling to Thames. This has been made possible through partnerships between local Thames businesses and Thames-coromandel District Council.” The Thames soft plastics recycling bins are at Pak’nsave, The Warehouse and council offices. A fourth bin will also be installed outside the Thames Refuse Transfer Station by the end of the month. The recycling bins are for: soft plastic bags that have been used in packaging for bread, pasta, rice, fruit and veges, toilet paper, kitchen towels, etc; ■ clean cling film (LDPE or resin 4); cereal box liners; ■ wrappers for chocolate, muesli bar wrappers and biscuits; ■ light foil bags from coffee and tea products, chips and confectionery; ■ courier packaging; ■ dry dog food bags; ■ netting citrus bags; ■ garden potting mix bags; ■ ice pack bags (empty and dry); ■ newspaper wrapping. The bins are not for: ■ compostable plastic bags (even if these bags also say recyclable); ■ single use face masks or RAT test kit packaging; ■ coffee cups; ■ food or drinks; ■ glass, cans and plastic bottles; ■ general rubbish. Council asks that these are not placed in the new soft plastics recycling bins as they will ‘contaminate’ them and cause problems with the recycling process. Smart Environmental will collect the soft plastics and bale the plastic ready to transport either to Future Post in Auckland (where the product will be made into plastic fence posts) or SAVEBOARD in Hamilton (where it will be made into building materials). Council is investigating how it can extend the scheme to other parts of the district.