Recycle your Soft Plastic bags #Dunedin


“The objective is for 70% of New Zealanders to have access to a drop-off facility for soft plastics within 20km of their home.” –Scott Simpson

### ODT Online Fri, 23 Jun 2017
Recycling for plastic packaging arrives
By John Lewis
All those plastic bags floating around after shopping expeditions can now be recycled under a joint initiative between the retail sector, the packaging industry and the Government. The Love New Zealand Soft Plastics Recycling programme was launched in Dunedin yesterday, and will enable soft plastics and soft packaging such as shopping bags, bread bags, frozen food bags and food wrap to be recycled at the 14 New World, Countdown, FreshChoice, Pak’n Save and The Warehouse stores in Dunedin and Mosgiel. Associate Environment Minister Scott Simpson said the programme was already running in Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington and Canterbury. […] The $700,000 contribution from the Government’s waste minimisation fund was being matched by contributions from retailers and some suppliers, bringing the total project funding  to more than $1.6million. […] Cargill Enterprises would collect the recycled plastics from the shops. 
Read more

Last year I convivially swapped emails with the manager of Centre City New World enquiring about how soon the store would adopt the national soft plastics recycling programme. He kindly immediately contacted FoodStuffs to find out ….well the day has come! Happy customer!

Try this simple test to help identify recyclable plastic material…
“The test is if you can pull it and stays stringy in consistency, it’s fine. But if you can tear it cleanly it is not recyclable.” Stuff


Soft Plastics Recycling 
The Love NZ Soft Plastics Programme is about informing New Zealanders about how to keep plastic bags and packaging out of landfill. Collect all the soft plastics which you use at home, make sure the bags are empty and dry and drop them into the Love NZ Soft Plastics Recycling bins at participating stores.

The project is supported by major brands including Asaleo Care, Ceres Organics, Coca Cola Amatil, Cottonsoft, Fonterra, Frucor, George Weston Foods, Goodman Fielder, Griffins, Hubbards, Kathmandu, Kelloggs, Kimberly-Clark, Lululemon, Mars, Mother Earth, Mondelez (Cadbury), Nestle, New Zealand Post, Pams, Pure Delish, Simplot (Birds Eye), Spicers, SunRice and Wrigleys; Amcor Flexibles, Astron, Coveris, Snell Packaging & Safety with many others committed to joining the programme. Soft plastic bags are not currently collected for recycling by councils because they can contaminate the recycling process. New Zealanders use over 1.6 billion plastic bags in the home every year. The project takes all soft plastic bags including bread bags, frozen food bags, toilet paper packaging, confectionery and biscuit wrap, chip bags, pasta and rice bags, courier envelopes, shopping bags, sanitary hygiene packaging – basically anything made of plastic which can be scrunched into a ball. Customers can bring their used soft plastics back to store and put them in the recycling bin.

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Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.


Filed under Business, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Geography, Health & Safety, Innovation, Inspiration, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Pet projects, Public interest, Resource management, Technology, Urban design

8 responses to “Recycle your Soft Plastic bags #Dunedin

  1. Ray McKendry

    This is a good move. Well we try to reduce the number of bags by taking boxes and bags. I have a big hard plastic box. So we recycle the ones we do take home and try to take just enough to do that and no more. In that way we keep down using new bags to a minimum.

  2. Hype O'Thermia

    Op shops are always looking out for clean supermarket bags otherwise they have to buy bags and that reduces the amount of profit they make for their charities. I think it is better to re-use clean bags than put them in recycling bins, though that’s better than sending them to landfill.
    One thing that annoys me bigly, those stoooooopid “doggy bags” sold for picking up dog poops.
    Why on earth would anyone BUY special bags for dogshit? Don’t they buy anything else, don’t they have a clutter of free plastic bags? Or are they so deeply concerned that they take eco cloth bags to the supermarket … then have to buy special green coloured plastic poop bags because they’re also too conscientious to leave their dog’s deposit on the footpath?

    It puts me in mind of a sight that’s less frequent now than it used to be, the gaily painted Greenpeace stickered vehicles with exhausts smoking like factory chimneys before the Clean Air Act.

  3. Elizabeth

    The Presbyterian Support Otago op shop at St Andrew St asks for spare bags that are Not supermarket bags. St Vincent de Paul opposite Knox Gardens on George St uses supermarket bags.

    I would rather have the supermarket bags repurposed to the manufacture of sellable products – removing the majority of them from the local environment altogether after my grocery shop. However, catching all soft plastic bags and packaging is a major step forward at Dunedin.

  4. Hype O'Thermia

    Salvation Army Gt King St has a notice up asking for bags. I usually take mine to ReStore (Malcam Trust).
    I think the recommended sequence is reuse (clean grocery bags to opshop) > opshop bag for dog poop, or wrapping messy stuff to put in the garbage bags, or into “repurposing” bin. Do you know why Presb.Support don’t use supermarket bags when they’re OK about other 2nd hand bags?

    • Elizabeth

      Appears to be manager Chrissie’s preference at PSO.

      The whole idea is to keep these horrible soft plastic bags out of landfills.

      Like I say, recycle soft plastics to the new Love New Zealand Soft Plastics Recycling bins at the participating Dunedin stores listed in the post at top of thread.

  5. Hype O'Thermia

    Something has to be used for things like dog poop, packing purchases from op shops, wrapping plants when you give them to a friend, wrapping meal debris to make it harder for animals to “liberate” them from rubbish bags before the garbos pick them up. To me it makes sense to re-use rather than use new ones e.g. the dog poo bags (see above). Shopping bags are a resource, the trouble has been that they have been treated as rubbish along with bread bags and clingfilm. I’m delighted that there is now somewhere “not rubbish” to take all that soft plastic that is of no further (re) use. Our rubbish sack has more of that than anything else as a rule, what with compost heap, pets and wild birds.

    • Elizabeth

      Newspaper or other paper a useful thing to scoop with enabling reuse of your plastic carry bag. Back to the old days….

  6. Elizabeth

    At Facebook:

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