Academic journal article Journal of Environmental Health

"CARE" Program Is the Only Nationwide Recycling Program for Polystyrene

Academic journal article Journal of Environmental Health

"CARE" Program Is the Only Nationwide Recycling Program for Polystyrene

Article excerpt

Despite the boom in recycling during the past six years, Dart Container Corporation's CARE (Cups Are REcyclable) program remains the only portable recycling program for polystyrene foam food service products available nationwide.

The CARE program offers Dart's larger institutional customers a fully-integrated polystyrene recycling system that includes promotional materials, a collection device, densification equipment, transportation and reprocessing. More than 50 active CARE programs exist in North America. CARE participants include schools, corporate cafeterias, hotels and hospitals.

Polystyrene recycling programs work best when a large quantity of polystyrene is collected in one place. The CARE program targets high-volume users of polystyrene, like schools, hospitals and corporate cafeterias. At these locations, customers frequently eat on premises. Because most of the foam food service products stay at the facility, an operator can collect a large percentage of used polystyrene products.

Effective foam recycling requires that customers and food service staff be educated and trained. Recycling requires that people learn new behavior. Customers must learn to separate the recyclable polystyrene foam from paper and food trash. Staff must learn how to densify and store the recycled polystyrene. …

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