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Mars, who makes Snickers and M&Ms, has distributed 17,400 candy waste collection bags to U.S. consumers since the beginning of October. The bags can be filled with wrappers and packaging from any brand and mailed for free to a specialty recycler in Illinois. G2 Revolution, the recycler turns the packages into pellets and uses them to make waste bags for dogs, Seattle Times reported.
The bags can fit around 4 ounces of material, and if all 17,400 are returned, over 2 tons of wrappers would be recycled. Although this is just a fraction of the wrappers that will be tossed on Halloween, it’s a great start to a problem that has been going on for years.
“What I’d like to see is this program actually goes away over time and we have a solution where it’s no longer required and we’re fully recyclable,” said Tim LeBel, president of sales for Mars Wrigley U.S.
Mars is also partnering with Rubicon Technologies, which has a program called Trick or Trash. Trick or Trash mails one free box to schools, businesses, and community groups to collect candy wrappers for recycling. Rubicon expects to send out 5,000 boxes this year, and they also pay extra to UPS to offset the carbon emissions from the shipping.
According to an estimate from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), containers and packaging made up 21 percent of trash going into landfills in 2018. It’s about time that companies and stepping up and take responsibility for their packaging and environmental damage. This is not a burden that should be on the consumers, and we hope that other companies will follow suit in the coming years. Check out this guide on how to do Halloween Sustainably: How to Cut Down on Packaging, Waste, and Woe.
Globally, we produce 300 million tons of plastic every year, 78 percent of which is NOT reclaimed or recycled. Around 8.8 million tons of plastic get dumped into the oceans every year! 700 marine animals are faced with extinction due to the threat that plastic poses to them in the form of entanglement, Pollution, and ingestion. 50 percent of sea turtles have plastic in their stomachs. By 2050, 99 percent of all seabird species will have ingested plastic waste. According to a study by the World Economic Forum, there will be one tonne of plastic for every three tonnes of fish by 2025, and if things go on business as usual, there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish by 2050.
Read more about how companies like Facebook, Tupperware, Google, Dove, Budweiser, Carlsberg, and FIJI Water are working towards reducing plastic Pollution. Places around the world like Tel Aviv, California, Baltimore, Scotland, and many more are banning various single-use plastics, and others are coming up with creative ways to recycle and use plastic waste.
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- 10 Ways to Make Amazing Spooky Vegan Recipes for Halloween!
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- 15 of Your Favorite Famous Halloween Treats, Made Vegan!
- Halloween Done Sustainably: How to Cut Down on Packaging, Waste, and Woe
Easy Ways to Help the Planet:
- Eat Less Meat: Download Food Monster, the largest plant-based Recipe app on the App Store, to help reduce your environmental footprint, save animals and get healthy. You can also buy a hard or soft copy of our favorite vegan cookbooks.
- Reduce Your Fast Fashion Footprint: Take the initiative by standing up against fast fashion Pollution and supporting sustainable and circular brands like Tiny Rescue that are raising awareness around important issues through recycled zero-waste clothing designed to be returned and remade over and over again.
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- Do What You Can: Reduce waste, plant trees, eat local, travel responsibly, reuse stuff, say no to single-use plastics, recycle, vote smart, switch to cold water laundry, divest from fossil fuels, save water, shop wisely, Donate if you can, grow your own food, volunteer, conserve energy, compost, and don’t forget about the microplastics and microbeads lurking in common household and personal care products!