FMCG giant Colgate and global recycler, TerraCycle, have launched the first recycling program for electric toothbrushes in Australia.
The Colgate Electric Toothbrush Recycling Program allows consumers to send their used electric toothbrush bases and handles to Terracycle for free, where they can be disassembled and separated into their various parts.
The plastics will be shredded and melted into pellets to make new recycled products such as garden beds and park benches, while the metals are separated and recovered.
Electric toothbrushes and other forms of e-waste have been considering extremely difficult to recycle because of the need to separate materials, and as a result the majority end up in landfill.
“Drawing on the success of our on-going recycling program for oral care products, we wanted to go one step further and make electric toothbrushes recyclable on a national scale. We’re very excited to be launching this sustainable option, a first-of-its-kind for e-waste, in Australia,” Colgate vice president and general manager of South Pacific, Julie Dillon, said.
Consumers can sign up to the program for free online, with Colgate accepting all brands of electric toothbrush waste as well as toothpaste tubes and caps, regular toothbrushes and packaging, toothbrush and toothpaste tube outer packaging and floss containers.
Using a TerraCycle account, customers download and print a pre-paid shipping label and can drop off their used products in a cardboard box at an Australia Post office.
“TerraCycle has a long-lasting partnership with Colgate and together we have contributed to the recycling of an incredible one million oral care items to date. As part of our mission to eliminate the idea of waste, recycling electric toothbrushes is a big step in the right direction to achieving this goal,” Jean Bailliard, general manager of TerraCycle Australia and New Zealand added.
For every 1kg of electric toothbrush bases and handles sent to TerraCycle, consumers can earn A$1 for the Australian school or charity of their choice.