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Greenopolis Partners Team Up To Recycle #5 Plastic!

We all know (or should by now) that #1 PET plastic (think water/pop bottle) and #2 HDPE plastic (think milk jugs) get recycled regularly. And they should- they are great materials and recycling them saves energy and cuts the pipeline from the oil and gas well. Reuse and recycle them time and again. But pity poor #5 Polypropylene (think yogurt cup). Polypropylene – polypro to her friends- is a safe, durable useful material that can be made into everything from containers to toothbrushes to high performance athletic apparel. But polypro is way under-recycled. Fortunately that is changing.

A recent post in the Burlington Free Press focused on Greenopolis Partners Seventh Generation, Preserve Products, Stonyfield Organics and others, who are collaborating in a polypro recycling effort called Gimme 5.

Gimme 5 collects #5 plastic, from bottle caps, dishwashing liquid bottles, cottage cheese and margarine tubs, and yogurt cups – nearly any clean containers made from this nifty material.

The Gimme 5 bins can be found at many Whole Foods Markets, another Greenopolis partner. To date Gimme 5 bins can be found in 36 states across the country. You can also mail in your # 5 plastic to Gimme 5- that’s how badly they want your polypropylene!

“We like it because it fits in with our whole sustainability direction at Seventh Generation,” Peter Swaine, director of packaging and development at Seventh Generation, says in the article.

Preserve Products uses the polypropylene it collects to make toothbrushes, razors, spatulas, plates, bowls cups colanders and other useful household items. Those items can be sent back to Preserve and recycled into new ones at the end of their lifetimes as well.

So get with it. Don’t trash that #5- take it to your local Gimme 5 bin and give it another chance.

About godsdoghowls

I'm Senior Manager for Community Engagement and Development at Greenopolis.com; a hunter and naturalist, rabbinic student and maple sugar maker, husband of Sara and father of 5 terrific children.


6 thoughts on “Greenopolis Partners Team Up To Recycle #5 Plastic!

  1. Oustanding!!! #5 has confuddled me forever! This is a fantastic solution!

    Posted by Petunia GreenBeans | May 25, 2011, 11:23 pm
  2. This is fantastic! Does it include plastic straws by chance?

    Posted by Lynn Hasselberger | May 25, 2011, 11:41 pm
    • I believe so- if they are #5. Go to the Preserve Products Gimme 5 website for details.

      Posted by greenopolisjoe | May 31, 2011, 1:33 pm
      • Lynn that is a great question about the straws. As a mother of an eight year old it is hard to avoid the presence of straws.

        The toothbrush solution is wonderful. Toothbrushes have built in obsolescence so if not recycled, which is what happens most of the time, they sit in landfills FOREVER, away from all their polypro peeps. Way to go Greenopolis.

        Posted by Jessica Janes | July 11, 2011, 10:15 pm
  3. I have a preserve toothbrush, razor, picnic cups and several storage vessels. #5 is a great material, and Preserve is a great group of folks.

    Posted by greenopolisjoe | July 12, 2011, 2:49 pm
  4. I do not shop @ whole foods. I shop @ Berkeley Bowl and Costco.

    I purchase bulk using no new containers when I can. I even reuse plastic bags for produce.

    I do not like to put #5 in garbage. I hardly have any garbage.

    What’s a convenient solution for disposing a few #5 containers occasionally?

    Posted by Beryl Golden | February 2, 2012, 6:16 pm

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