Launched April 16, the Glass Recycling Foundation (GRF), Ann Arbor, Michigan, will focus solely on funding glass recycling initiatives. The nonprofit organization will provide and raise funds for localized and targeted assistance, demonstration and pilot projects that address gaps in the glass recycling supply chain across the United States, the organization says.
“Glass bottles and containers are endlessly recyclable,” GRF Board President Lynn Bragg remarks. “The Glass Recycling Foundation will impact communities by funding projects to recover more and higher quality glass.”
The organization’s board members represent various companies and organizations, including Owens-Illinois, Diageo, Strategic Materials, Inc., Northeast Recycling Council, the Recycling Partnership, Urban Mining, California State University and Chico.
GRF will collaborate with the Glass Recycling Coalition (GRC), which consists of nearly 40 members from the entire glass recycling value chain, including material recovery facilities, glass recyclers, local government organizations, end markets and brands. Since 2016, GRC has highlighted best practices in glass recycling processing, collection and collaboration. GRF will support the GRC’s glass recycling efforts on a local level by funding projects.
“GRF will be instrumental in bringing much-needed investments to glass recycling and partnering with other funding opportunities to make glass recycling a high-quality and convenient service that consumers want and expect,” states Laura Hennemann, Strategic Materials Inc. and GRF executive board member.
The GRF aims to increase the availability of cullet, the industry term for furnace-ready recycled glass that can become new bottles, jars and fiberglass, which will help meet the demand from U.S. glass container and fiberglass insulation manufacturers.
According to a 2018 study by the GRC, 93 percent of consumers and residents expect to be able to recycle their glass containers. More than 80 percent of U.S. recycling programs include glass collection options for residents. While many recyclers rely on export markets, the end market for recycled glass is primarily domestic, the organization says.
For more information on the GRF and how to support their work, click here.