In March, JEDA was a grateful recipient of a recycling grant from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) worth $8,261. With these funds, a baler was purchased and installed at our 40,000 sq foot manufacturing facility in Dyersville IA.
As a plastic resin compounder, we at JEDA know the importance of recycling plastic in our production process. Not only are we able to realize costs savings by using recycling content in many of our products but throughout the years, JEDA has saved nearly 8 million pounds of recycled resin from being disposed in landfills.
JEDA consumes 1.5 million pounds of feedstock (resin and fiberglass) annually thus accumulating packaging waste in the form of cardboard, poly liners and heavy-duty super sacks. Finding an outlet for the cardboard waste was as easy as calling a few local companies; the large gaylord boxes are sold to local manufacturers for reuse, and all other cardboard scrap is picked up by a local recycler.
“Where we ran into issues with our recycling process was with our, it our poly liners(bags) and super sacks,” explained vice-president, Ronda Haskell.
JEDA started collecting the liners and supersacks in large gaylord boxes with the hope that one day we would find a recycler for these items. Due to the overwhelming footprint these boxes were taking up in the warehouse, a solution was needed quickly. Eventually, a local recycler Dubuque agreed to take the liners. However, shipping the liners and supersacks as is would be costly as the boxes were mostly filled with air. From a transportation emissions standpoint, this was not an environmentally friendly choice nor was it the recycler’s preference.
According to Haskell’s calculations, 1 bale of poly liners is equivalent to 30 boxes of gaylord boxes filled with liners. Since installation in late March, JEDA has made 3 bales of clear poly liners and 5 bales of supersacks; that is equivalent to 240 gaylord boxes or the area of 6 full semi-trailers (double stacked boxes)!
“We were very fortunate to be awarded this grant from the Iowa DNR; now that the baler is installed, we have gained an abundance of space back in our warehouse and can ship the bales to the recycler much more economically. We are ecstatic to expand our recycling efforts to our waste stream,” comments Haskell. JEDA’s commitment to waste reduction, recycling and reuse will continue as we fully understand the importance of a greener tomorrow.
"This article was prepared with the support of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources Agreement Number 21-G550-07FL. However, any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of IDNR.
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