What is REDcycle?
Your soft plastics can be recycled!
“Plastic is bad” - it’s something we’ve all heard. But, it’s not completely accurate. All those images with plastics in the ocean? Well, there’s two sides to the story... Some soft plastics CAN be recycled and they end up in the oceans because:
a) we are not recycling them appropriately (i.e. unaware that they can be recycled, putting soft plastics in landfill, not taking soft plastics to collection points ...) and/or
b) facilities are not recycling appropriately.
Although, we're here to focus on what we can do for soft plastic recycling! Let’s meet REDcycle …
What is REDcycle?
REDcycle is a soft plastic recycling program available in Australia, an incentive by RED Group - a consulting and recycling organisation.
REDcycle collects soft plastics from a number of major local supermarkets such as Coles and Woolies and turns these soft plastics into furniture, sanitiser stands and mounts and products for infrastructures (like asphalt additive).
What happens to your soft plastics?
Your soft plastics gets collected and shared between a number of partners that create everyday products with your soft plastics. These partners include:
- Replas - creating storage boxes, santiser stands, outdoor furniture such as benches and tables, decking and more.
- Close the Loop - soft plastics get transformed into TonerPlas which is an additive used in asphalt to improve performance and make it last longer. Did you know asphalt with TonerPlas requires less maintenance that traditional asphalt? DOUBLE WIN.
- Plastic Forests - a wide range of garden, infrastructure and outdoor products are created by this sustainable brand. From garden beds, to wheel stops - Plastic Forests are always looking for innovative ways to reuse soft plastics.
What can you REDcycle?
The list is endless!
Here’s a quick scrunch test …
- Can it be scrunched?
- Is it made from plastic (not plant based or labeled as compostable)?
If you answer 'Yes' to both of these - then great news - it can be recycled! (thanks to REDcycle)
Can I REDcycle it if it doesn't have the REDcycle logo?
You may have seen the REDcycle logo before on the back of packaging... a little something like this:
But not all packaging has this logo ...
The short answer is: if it passes the scrunch test - it can be REDcycled (even without a REDcycle logo)
The REDcycle logo are for partners of REDcycle. REDcycle partners pay a fee to REDcycle to use the REDcycle logo on their products - this logo makes it a little easier for people to know whether the packaging can be recycled.
bread bags (remove the bread clip)
nut, seeds and dried fruit soft packaging
plastic re-usable bags
lolly soft packaging
protein bars/snacks wrappers
plastic shopping bags
toilet paper packaging
all The Good Give soft packaging
Here is a list of things you can REDcycle:
- Biscuit packets (outer wrapper only)
- Bread bags (without the tie)
- Bubble wrap (large sheets cut into A3 size pieces)
- Cat and dog food pouches (as clean and dry as possible)
- Cellophane from bunches of flowers (cut into A3 size pieces)
- Cereal box liners
- Chip and cracker packets (silver lined)
- Chocolate and snack bar wrappers
- Cling film - GLAD, COLES HOME brand and WOOLWORTHS Essentials Home brand ONLY
- Confectionery bags
- Document sleeves (remove the white reinforcement strip along the holes)
- Dry pet food bags
- Fresh produce bags
- Frozen food bags
- Green bags (woven polypropylene bags)
- Ice cream wrappers
- Large sheets of plastic that furniture comes wrapped in (cut into A3 size pieces)
- Meat - plastic packaging that has contained meat (rinse and dry first)
- Netting produce bags (any metal clips removed)
- Newspaper and magazine wrap
- Pasta bags
- Pet food bags (chaff/horse/chicken) - both the plastic and woven polypropylene types (but not woven nylon). Cut into A3 size pieces and shake free of as much product as possible
- Plastic Australia Post satchels
- Plastic carrier bags from all stores
- Plastic film wrap from grocery items such as nappies and toilet paper
- Plastic sachets
- Potting mix and compost bags - both the plastic and woven polypropylene types (cut into A3 size pieces and free of as much product as possible)
- Rice bags - both plastic and the woven type (if large, cut into A3 size pieces)
- Snap lock bags / zip lock bags
- Squeeze pouches with lid on (e.g. yogurt/baby food)
- Wine/water bladders - clear plastic ones only
What can't you REDcycle?
Anything that cannot be scrunched into a ball, or is made from plant based materials cannot be REDcycled. If you are unsure - feel free to contact REDcycle, or send The Good Give a message :)
- Plastic bottles
- Plastic containers
- Any rigid plastic such as meat trays, biscuit trays or strawberry punnets
- Adhesive tape
- Balloons (of any kind)
- Bathroom/shower loofahs
- Biodegradable/degradable/compostable plastics
- Black plastic bags used to dispose of other soft plastics
- Blister packs, tablets and capsule packaging
- Blow up pool, pool toys or beds - plastic or PVC
- Bread bag tags
- Christmas tinsel and Christmas trees
- Cling film - with the EXCEPTION OF GLAD, COLES HOME brand and WOOLWORTHS Essentials Home brand
- Cooler bags
- Disposable food handling gloves of any variety
- Film negatives and x-rays
- Fishing line
- Foam or polystyrene of any kind (including soft flexible foam)
- Foil / Alfoil of any kind
- Food waste
- Laminated materials and overhead transparencies
- Nylon - woven, soft or fishing line
- Adhesive tape
- Paper and cardboard
- Paper post packs
- Plastic/clear vinyl packaging from sheets and doonas etc
- Plastic strapping used for securing boxes and pallets
- Polyester of any kind
- Powdered milk packets, made of foil
- Rope of any variety
- Rubber, rubber gloves, latex
- Solar pool covers
- Tin cans
- VHS Tape
- Vinyl - any type of vinyl packaging
- Wet plastic materials as mould is a problem for us
- Wine/water bladders - foil based
- Wrapping paper and cardboard, ribbons or bows
Extra REDcycle tips
- Add any small stickers such as fruit labels to soft plastic - this can be recycled via REDcycle
- Make sure your soft plastic is clean and dry
- Even if it doesn’t have a REDcycle label, it can be recycled (just make sure it passes the scrunch test)
- Save all your soft plastics in a spare plastic bag - this will make it easier to return to store!
- Avoid recycling biodegradable and compostable plastics (these are made from different materials and may contaminate the soft plastic recycling)
Join the journey
Looking for more about zero waste? Let's keep in touch!