What Is Terracycle?
Terracycle is a scheme which reduces the amount of ‘hard-to-recycle’ items ending up in landfill or the ocean. Infrequently recycled items which Terracycle collects include crisp and biscuit packets, bread wrappers, toothpaste tubes, contact lenses, and loads more. Scroll down for a full list of what we accept at our Terracycle station.
The huge amount of packaging that ends up in landfill is not because the items can’t be recycled, it’s because the councils responsible for recycling centres often don’t have the capacity, funds, or means to recycle these items. Terracycle allows you to send those infrequently recycled items somewhere to be recycled - often being made into other products, such as playground flooring or garden furniture.
A Guildford resident recycles at ZERO's Terracycle station
If you’re local to Guildford and you’ve heard of Terracycle you probably know Cheryl! She’s headed up CTK Recycling in Guildford for the last six years, and has been single-handedly sorting through the recycling that the community drops to her, ensuring less waste goes to landfill.
In the last 2 years alone Cheryl has saved over 1300kg of waste from going to landfill!
As awareness of Terracyle has grown, it’s made Cheryl’s job harder - a good problem to have, but still overwhelming when dealing with it on your own! So Zero Carbon Guildford wants to find ways to support Cheryl’s Terracycle heroics and prevent even more perfectly good recycling being buried in our earth or dumped in our oceans.
Zero will act as a drop-off point for any of the 27 waste streams detailed at the bottom of this page. Just make sure it’s clean and separated by product stream and we’ll do the rest!
What Does This Project Achieve?
Benefits Of Terracycle
As we’ve already noted, the main benefit of Terracycle is a drastic reduction in recyclable plastic, foil, and other materials polluting our environment. Food wrappers are now the single largest source of pollution on our beaches and rivers, and whilst some of the low-density and layered plastics can’t be effectively recycled, a significant proportion of this waste could be recycled or repurposed to cut pollution if we had better facilities and organisation.
Similarly, extractive manufacturing processes can be reduced by making use of plastics that otherwise end up in giant garbage patches in the ocean. Some examples of innovation like this include turning plastic bottles into pothole fillers - claimed to be 3 times more resistant than asphalt! - and this New Zealand enterprise which has saved 24 million printer cartridges from landfill and turning them into pens and road base!
Terracycle streams have led to a wide range of innovative waste-saving circular economy project start ups, from planters to playgrounds to ping pong tables! They don’t all start with a P! But they do all start with you getting involved with a local Terracycle scheme and reaching out to your community to transform how we consider consumption and waste in our day-to-day lives.
In addition to the tangible waste reduction, there are hidden benefits to programmes such as Terracycle. The phrase ‘out of sight out of mind’ applies here. Our consumerist lifestyles are so convenient that we don’t even consider how things are made, the impact of manufacturing facilities on the neighbouring communities, or where our rubbish ends up.
Schemes like Terracycle can be an effective educational tool in raising people’s conscious consideration of how their behaviour, purchasing, and consumption impacts our ecosystems and fellow human beings. Pop in to the Zero Carbon Guildford building to check out some of our displays and exhibits on circular economy and waste.
What Problem Is This Addressing?
Most people are aware of the plastic pollution crisis, if not the true scale and severity of it.
International Coastal Clean Up sees volunteers across the planet litter-pick our beaches and oceans. In 2019 a whopping 943,195 volunteers removing a record 4,771,602 food wrappers in a single day.
Preventing as much waste from entering our oceans is crucial to the future of our planet and its ecosystems. But there's a far bigger threat to our oceans and the marine life that supports food chains than plastic straws.
Up to 1m tonnes of fishing gear is lost in the ocean every single year! This is by far the biggest contributor to ocean pollution, accounting for as much as 50% of marine plastic pollution.
So whilst every little helps, if you are serious about healing our oceans, and protecting some of the most intelligent species on our planet, it's time to stop eating fish, and put an end to the supertrawlers destroying our seas for corporate profit.
The film Seaspiracy is a good place to start if you want to learn more.
How To Use Guildford Terracycle
Have a look below at the Terracycle Streams that are currently running in Guildford
Clean & collect any waste that matches the streams below
Separate the waste into separate streams according to the images below…
Then drop them to Zero Carbon Guildford's premises, and our volunteers will box it up ready for collection
Did You Know...
For each box collected Terracycle pays a rebate directly to charity! Rebate values differ by waste stream, but this added bonus means not only are you helping to keep waste out of our oceans, but you are actively helping support a good cause! CTK Recycling’s rebates go to Kicks Count, a charity focused on empowering mums-to-be and professionals to lower stillbirth rates
Terracycle Streams Recycled In Guildford
Babybel labels, net bags, mini rolls flexible plastic packaging, sleeves & trays, wax, wrappers & metal clasp.
No other brand or cardboard packaging.
Biscuits, Crackers, Cakes
Single & multipack biscuits, crackers, cake, rice cakes, flapjacks, scones, mini cheddars, Ryvita-like thingies, cheese straws, Mini Cheddars, wafers, twiglets
Cereal & fruit bars / Naked bars etc
Chocolate wrappers or packaging
All sliced bread bags
Other clear plastic bags
Any brand of bakery plastic packaging (e.g. plastic trays, zipper bags, plastic packs etc.)
Plastic packaging from any non-bakery items
Any brand flexible plastic & metallic plastic tubes used for body creams, ointments or moisturisers,
Flexi plastic wrappers for face wipes, lip sticks, lip glosses & lip balms
Mascara tubes & wands, lip & cheek, highlighter & bronzer sticks, eye shadow compacts.
Glass, plastic, cardboard
Other brand wipes or sprays.
All brands cheese wrappers & cheese slice clear plastic
Plastic nets & flexible cheese pouches
Cheese tubs, trays, cardboard, aluminium, wooden boxes, cheese was or wax paper, paper cheese slice dividers, squeezy tubes, labels
Chocolates & Sweets
All brands chocolate & sweet wrappers, pouches & bags
Fudge, choc covered raisins & nuts
Single, block, & multipack
Paper, foil, carboard, trays, tubs
Lids, wipe packets, pumps, plastic air fresheners cartridges & packaging.
Flexible plastic packaging (e.g. cloths & marigolds)
No bottles of laundry, bleach, lids, trigger heads or toilet products
All brands flexible coffee packaging, ground coffee pouches, coffee bean pouches
Individual coffee bags, capsules, ground coffee, cardboard, glass packaging
All brands flexible DW tablets, salts, stain remover, cleaning product refills
Outer sleeves & packaging DW tab tubs and DW cleaner, air fresheners
Bottles, tubs, cardboard, laundry, bleach, household cleaning products
Ferrero Rocher gold plastic tray, aluminium wrappers, plastic box and plastic box wrappers.
No paper casings, cardboard packaging or any other brand.
Flash Mop Wipes
Flash powermop absorbing pads, speedmop wet cloths, hand & floor wipes.
No other brands and no outer packaging.
Disposable gloves (latex, vinyl, nitrite, polyethylene, any colour)
Marigolds or cardboard packaging.
Hasbro Toys & Games
All Hasbro toys and games (except electronic toys & games).
2023 Update: Now taking any brand, any materials (wood, metal, plastic & cardboard games etc)
Kinder flexible plastic packaging, chocolate wrappers, aluminium foil packaging, rigid plastic packaging.
No other brands or cardboard packaging.
Single & Multipack: Popcorn, nuts, pretzels, pork scratchings, Lentil curls, pea and hummus crisps, scampi fries & breadsticks
Chocolate coated nuts, seeds or fruit & nuts (see Chocolate & Sweets)
All Lavazza eco caps.
Other brands, other coffee containers, pouches or caps
Marigold durable gloves, disposable gloves & plastic packaging.
No other brand of gloves
Electric toothbrush heads & covers, electric flosser nozzles, flossing sticks & interdental brushes and dental floss containers. Manual toothbrushes
Battery operated toothbrushes, toothpaste tubes & caps, outer packaging, dental floss
Plastic lids (use council green bin)
Any other brand
Any Aqua Optima water filter products
Any other brands or packaging
Weleda soft touch plastic tubes.
Any other brand