Tracy, California recently began collecting foam foodservice and packaging products through curbside recycling. Through a partnership with Dart Container Corporation and Tracy Delta Disposal, residents are now able to place foam products labeled with the number six in the blue recycling bins. Foam #6 products include foam plates, foam cups, foam egg cartons, foam take-out containers and molded foam used for electronic packaging. The foam foodservice products need to be rinsed to rid them of food. Items that can’t be placed in the blue recycling bins include lids, straws and foam packaging peanuts.
“For many years, we have not been able to recycle foam. We’re grateful for this partnership with Dart and Tracy Delta and are looking forward to running a more sustainable city,” said Kevin Tobeck, Tracy public works director. “Please begin placing the accepted foam in your recycling bin today.”
The new curbside recycling program will divert foam products from local landfills. Dart Container drives recycling efforts in California through its manufacturing facilities in Corona and Lodi. It also provides recycling programs, such as CARE (Cups Are REcyclable) and Recycla-Pak, for businesses across the U.S. Los Angeles, California has a curbside foam recycling program called “New to Blue”. In addition to Tracy and Los Angeles, California has more than 40 cities and counties that provide curbside recycling for foam products.
Recycled foam products can be made into new items such as architectural moldings and base boards. Polystyrene foam is sometimes mistakenly referred to as ‘Styrofoam®’, a registered trademark of the Dow Chemical Company. Foam generates less waste during production than paper alternatives and burns cleanly in modern municipal energy-from-waste facilities.