With few municipal programs accepting #5, Preserve teams with Organic Valley, Stonyfield Farm and Whole Foods Market®
Recyclers with good intentions, but no place to go with their yogurt cups and other #5 polypropylene plastics have had few options—until now. The Preserve Gimme 5 program gives shoppers a convenient drop-off location for containers often not accepted at municipal recycling centers. The program, created by Preserve, the leading recycled products company, and offered through a partnership with Whole Foods Market, organic yogurt maker Stonyfield Farm, and Organic Valley, an organic, farmer-owned cooperative, launches January 27 in select Whole Foods Market locations.
Polypropylene #5 is a strong, lightweight, food-grade, easy-to-recycle plastic. It’s commonly found in everything from yogurt and other dairy containers to hummus containers and medicine bottles. Grocery stores sell hundreds of products packaged in #5 plastic and it finds a home in millions of pantries and refrigerators. Yet, few communities have curbside #5 plastic collection. For those that do, many ship that plastic to Asia to be burned as energy. Collecting #5 plastic in stores and sending it to Preserve will limit the environmental footprint of this material and give it a second life as a new and useful Preserve product.
"This program will save thousands of pounds of #5 plastic from being sent to landfills. We’re thrilled to join this program and to empower our customers to increase their recycling efforts," says Jeremiah McElwee, senior Whole Body coordinator for Whole Foods Market. "We welcome this partnership and, thanks to a very successful pilot program at one of our Virginia stores, we know it will be popular with our shoppers as well."
The partnership between Preserve, Organic Valley and Stonyfield Farm reflects the three companies’ shared commitment to protecting the environment. Preserve is the leading maker of performance-driven and stylish 100% recycled household products, including the Preserve toothbrush, razor, tableware, and the award-winning Preserve
Kitchen line. Stonyfield has had an ongoing relationship with Preserve. Since 2000, the yogurt-maker has provided millions of yogurt cups and scrap plastic from its manufacturing facility and consumers to Preserve.
By dropping their #5 plastic containers in a Preserve Gimme 5 bin, "shoppers are helping make brand new Preserve products that represent real change," says Preserve founder and CEO Eric Hudson. "And by choosing Preserve Plastic™ versus virgin plastic, in the form of a toothbrush or razor, for example, we all benefit from a sizeable reduction in greenhouse gases emitted, and significantly less water, energy, oil and coal used in making the plastic."
"When we formed Organic Valley 20 years ago, our mission was to save family farm culture through organic farming and to be stewards of the environment," said George Siemon, one of the founding farmers and chief executive officer of Organic Valley. "That mission stands today, and we’re proud to partner with Stonyfield, Whole Foods Market and Preserve to offer our citizen-partners the option to recycle #5 plastic in an effort to reduce waste, limit pollution and save energy on a daily basis."
"Our long association with Preserve has been beneficial in so many ways," says Stonyfield Farm President and CE-Yo Gary Hirshberg. "Not only does it give new life to our cups and excess plastic, it also serves to remind our consumers of the need to ‘reduce-reuse-recycle,’ all of which are key to minimizing our impact on the planet."
The Preserve Gimme 5 program launches in January in select Whole Foods Markets in the Midwest, Northeast and Northern California. Whole Foods Market stores in Florida will join the program in mid-February. For a list of participating stores, visit www.preserveproducts.com .
Common #5 plastics include packaging for yogurt, cottage cheese, cream cheese, ricotta cheese, margarine and hummus containers; medicine bottles; some plastic ice cream containers; and food storage and take-out containers. The number 5 should be plainly marked on the bottom of the container.
Additionally, the Preserve Gimme 5 program accepts Brita® water pitcher filters for recycling. Brita® pitcher filters can be deposited in Gimme 5 bins along with other #5 plastic. Instructions for drying and submitting these filters can be found at www.preserveproducts.com.
Preserve Gimme 5 offers consumers a new recycling solution—one that allows them to see the fruits of their labors via the transformation of their yogurt cups and hummus tubs to new Preserve toothbrushes and razors. According to Hudson, "Recycling is the most common activity that people cite when asked what they do to reduce their impact on the earth. Recycling and choosing recycled products, coupled with other ways to reduce and reuse, take us all an important step closer toward protecting our planet so we can enjoy its beauty and share that beauty with future generations."
To learn more, visit www.preserveproducts.com.
Preserve is the leading producer of performance-driven and stylish 100% recycled household products: the Preserve toothbrush, razor, tableware, and the award-winning Preserve Kitchen line. The company is powered by the recycling efforts of individuals and companies via its Preserve Gimme 5 program. This program accepts #5 plastics that many municipalities do not currently recycle—such as yogurt cups and other common household containers. This year, Preserve will keep one million pounds of #5 plastic out of landfills—transforming it into new Preserve products. All recycling and manufacturing is done in the USA. Preserve empowers people to make everyday choices that are better for the earth while offering real solutions without compromise. Preserve products can be found at forward-thinking retailers like Whole Foods Market, Target, and a variety of grocery and natural food stores. Preserve's parent company, Recycline, was founded in 1996 and has become a leader in the effort to mitigate the impacts of the industrial age. www.preserveproducts.com
About Organic Valley Family of Farms
Organic Valley is America’s largest and oldest cooperative of organic farmers and is one of the nation's leading organic brands. Organized in 1988, it represents 1,341 farmers in 34 states and one Canadian province, and achieved $432.5 million in 2007 sales. Focused on its founding mission of saving family farms through organic farming, Organic Valley produces a variety of organic foods, including organic milk, soy, cheese, butter, spreads, creams, eggs, produce and juice, which are sold in supermarkets, natural foods stores and food cooperatives nationwide. The same farmers who produce for Organic Valley also produce a full range of delicious organic meat under the Organic Prairie Family of Farms label. For further information, call 1-888-444-MILK or visit www.organicvalley.coop, www.organicprairie.com and the cooperative’s farmer website, www.farmers.coop.
About Stonyfield Farm
Stonyfield Farm, marking its 26th year, is the world's leading organic yogurt company. Its all natural and certified organic yogurt, smoothies, milk, cultured soy, frozen yogurt and ice cream are distributed nationally. The company advocates that healthy food can only come from a healthy planet. Its organic ingredient purchases keep over 60,000 farm acres free of toxic, persistent pesticides and chemical fertilizers that can contaminate soil, rivers and drinking water.To help reduce global warming, Stonyfield offsets all of the C02 emissions generated from itsfacility energy use. The company also started a nonprofit called Climate Counts (climatecounts.org) which shows people how they can help fight climate change by the way they shop and invest. Stonyfield also donates 10% of its profits to efforts that help protect and restore the Earth. For more information about Stonyfield Farm, its products and initiatives, visit www.stonyfield.com .