A partnership with the Foodservice Packaging Institute (FPI), Falls Church, Virginia, has allowed material recovery facility (MRF) operator Millennium Recycling Inc., Sioux Falls, South Dakota, to add paper cups to its list of acceptable recyclables.
“We are committed to giving our customers in Sioux Falls, Yankton, Huron, southwest Minnesota and beyond the opportunity to provide a new life for recycled cups—not just send them to the landfill,” says Shannon Dwire, president of Millennium Recycling.
Roughly 600,000 tons of paper beverage cups are used each year in the United States, Millennium says, with the majority of this material ending up in landfills ad they were once thought to be unrecyclable because of their plastic lining, which insulates the cup and prevents leaks. However, a growing number of mills recognize that these cups are a source of high-quality fiber and are recycling them into new products, including tissue, boxes
"The team at FPI is working with us on communication efforts," says Marissa Begley, who handles marketing and communications for Millennium Recycling. She adds that FPI also is supporting the company with new social media messaging.
"Other than that, no equipment or process changes have been implemented at Millennium," Begley says.
Each year, Millennium Recycling processes about 50,000 tons of recyclables, such as plastic bottles, metal cans, glass jars, paper
“At FPI, our work is ongoing with communities, recycling facilities
To recycle the cups, Millennium asks residents to remove all lids, straws