RED Group, the Melbourne-based consulting and recycling organisation, developed and implemented the REDcycle Program: a recovery initiative for post-consumer soft plastic.
By partnering with Coles, Woolworths and some of Australia’s most-loved brands, RED Group have made it easy for consumers Australia wide to keep plastic bags and soft plastic packaging out of landfill.
Since 2011, REDcycle has recovered and diverted from landfill over 1.7 billion pieces of soft plastic (or 6605 tonnes). That’s enough to circle the earth 10.3 times! We now recover over 1 million pieces of soft plastic every single day from across the country.
RED Group has also partnered with the following Australian manufacturers who use the recovered recycled materials.
1. Replas (https://www.replas.com.au/ ), based in Ballarat, Victoria, who convert REDcycle material into a range of recycled products including indoor and outdoor furniture, bollards, and signage.
2. Close the Loop, based in Somerton, Victoria, who utilise REDcycle material as a component of high performance recycled asphalt additive for road infrastructure known as Tonerplas (https://www.closetheloop.com.au/tonerplas/ )
3. Plastic Forests, based in Albury, NSW, who use REDcycle material as a component of products such as mini wheel stops and air conditioner mounting blocks (and other products) for the consumer market (https://plasticforests.com.au/product/air-con-mounting-blocks/ )
Our focus presently it to change current purchasing habits in Australia. Many people choose products made from virgin materials rather than recycled material. It is vitally important for councils and the general public to help support the circular economy - this is crucial to keeping recycling in Australia a viable option.
We are therefore encouraging consumers and councils to be more a part of the circular economy and supporting the purchase of the products made from the recycled materials as opposed to driving people to recycle, at this stage. As you can appreciate, recycling is a linear approach if there is no market for the end products.
Without establishing mature markets pulling products through, we have nothing: no recycling; no circular economy; no progress; and ultimately more materials ending up in landfill.