- Resources Home
- Industry Sectors
- Waste Prevention
- Buy/Manufactured Recycled
- General Links
Buying recycled means purchasing products made with recovered materials. A necessary precedent to buying recycled is that manufacturers purchase recovered materials and use them in lieu of virgin materials in the manufacture of new products. For technical assistance and information about how to implement buying and manufacturing recycled activities at your organization, visit the Buy Recycled links, Manufacture Recycled links, Buy/Manufacture Recycled publications, and Buy Recycled Frequent Questions pages.
WasteWise partners commit to increasing overall recycled content in the products they purchase, either by purchasing recycled products in lieu of virgin products or by increasing the recycled content in those recycled products they already buy. Manufacturers have the additional option to increase the percentage of postconsumer content in the products they produce. Sample goals set by WasteWise partners in this area include:
- Establishing a policy that all employees shall, whenever possible, use recycled products and recycled materials to meet their needs.
- Purchasing recycled-content products and supplies for the cafeteria and office areas, as well as for maintenance and janitorial operations.
- Revising purchasing specifications to allow greater purchase of recycled-content materials, and purchase at least one new product with recycled content each year, starting with office supplies.
- Increasing the postconsumer recycled content in all product types by 5 percent each year.
- Reviewing the bid list every year to identify all products with recycled content and instituting a preferred purchase policy for products with recycled content.
Some of the recycled-content products most frequently purchased by WasteWise partners include copier paper, paper towels, and toilet paper. Many organizations also manufactured new products with recycled content, or increased the percentage of recycled content in existing manufactured products, diverted waste, and promoted wise use of materials. Listed below are some examples of WasteWise partner achievements in buying and manufacturing recycled:
- The Sandia National Laboratories (SNL)- New Mexico strives to integrate products with reduced environmental impact into purchase agreements and ongoing operations and maintenance, focusing on products with high recycled content and renewable biobased materials. In 2010, SNL purchased recycled-content products for 43 percent of its purchases (by dollar), including cardboard, toner cartridges, and paper. SNL has also extended its sustainable procurement initiative to electronics, requiring that electronics meet the EPEAT Silver-level guidelines, including product features such as containing postconsumer recycled plastic, containing at least 65 percent reusable/recyclable material, and being ENERGY STAR qualified.
- Xanterra Parks and Resorts at Zion Lodge established its environmentally preferable procurement program nearly a decade ago when realizing they could have a significant impact on natural resources through wise product stewardship. This program has been integrated in all operations within Zion Lodge including food and beverage, retail, maintenance, renovation, housekeeping, and administration. In recent years, Zion Lodge has continued to purchase products, such as trash bags, clipboards, manila envelopes, copy paper, and towels, with up to 100% recycled content.
- In 2010, nearly 60% of Franczek Radelet & Rose P.C.'s office supplies were composed of post consumer recycled content. Franczek's employees are aware of the environmental benefits when purchasing products with recycled content. Therefore, they strongly encourage food vendors for their various catering events to adapt to compostable cutlery and kitchen products. As a result of their successful purchasing policy, many of Franczeks' office supplies they purchase have up to 100% recycled content.