Plastic bags and film have always been a challenge in the recycling world. They are very difficult to contain if loose and get stuck in equipment. Disappearing markets along with the high cost of labor required to process them has forced us to remove them from our recycling program (See full press release). As one of very few recycling companies in the U.S. who accepted plastic bags, we do not make this announcement lightly.
We encourage you to reduce and reuse by bringing your own reusable bags to the store and opting for paper instead of plastic. Without an easy recycling option, it is our hope that people will begin to realize the overall negative impact plastic bags have on the environment and will start to avoid them altogether.
Clean plastic bags and film can still be brought to participating grocery stores and other retailers with separated collection bins (see below).
• Trex Film Recycling Program: Participating South Dakota stores include Econofoods, Family Thrift Center, Hy-Vee, Kohl’s, Nash Finch (Sunshine Foods), Sun Mart and Target. Learn more.
• Wrap Recycling Action Program (WRAP): See a list of local retail stores in the WRAP directory who accept plastic bags and film packaging. Learn more.
Plastic bags must be pulled out by hand, making them very labor intensive and difficult to capture.
If not pulled out, plastic bags wrap around recycling equipment and quickly jam up processing screens.
When too many bags get stuck, we have to shut down the equipment and manually cut them out.
Plastic bags easily escape bins, trucks and landfills, littering our land and waterways.
The average plastic bag is used for just 12 minutes
Plastic bags kill 100,000 marine animals every year
Nearly 2 million plastic bags are used every minute
Plastic bags take up to 1000 years to disintegrate