Sustainable packaging: Greenopolis rewards consumers who recycle

January 29, 2014

1 Min Read
Sustainable packaging: Greenopolis rewards consumers who recycle
Greenopolis kiosk




The concept of cradle-to-cradle management of packaging materials is a kind of Holy Grail to CPGs, retailers and packaging suppliers seeking to minimize their environmental footprints. Waste Management, the nation's largest residential recycler and waste disposal company, has launched a project that seeks to build a community of consumers who can help close the recycling loop.

In 2007, Waste Management met with Whole Foods Markets and Nestle Waters to discuss how they might create the first consumer and product-oriented tracking and recovery system for bottled water. A year later, this strategic partnership launched a venture that would use technology to boost recycling by engaging consumers online and encouraging them to return used packaging at kiosks where the container is recorded when bar codes are scanned and the consumer receives reward points for their actions. The points can be accumulated for rewards from more than 130,000 companies. The CPGs, meanwhile, are able to recover their own packaging to be recycled or reprocessed into other end-of-life uses such as other new products or incineration for energy.

Users can register for the program at The Website provides stories, blogs and videos about the environment, while offering members the opportunity to review their points and redeem rewards online.

The company began placing kiosks in 2009, deploying 100 machines at Whole Foods markets and collecting more than 1 million containers. Further expansion is planned in 2010.


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