After being collected by the kerbside truck, your recyclables go back to the centre to be sorted and processed so they are ready for both national and international markets. A little preparation at home makes the job easier, safer and cleaner for all involved. It is important to only recycle the right things as contamination with unwanted products can result in rejected loads.
Where Does It All Go?
Glass is colour sorted into green, brown, clear and sent to Auckland to be made into new bottles and jars. There is only one manufacturer of glass bottle and jars in NZ and this is O-I glass. (formally ACI glass). the company emplys 200 staff and operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The recycled content of glass containers made in NZ varies depending on the colour but may be as much as 65%. Keeping glass separated into its colours is very important for its ability to be recycled.
Cardboard is baled and exported overseas to be made into kraft liner, which is the brown layer of a box. Currently we bale around 9 tonnes a month.
Paper is sent to Paper Reclaim and usually sold to local paper mills. Sometimes it may be sent overseas to China or Indonesia if there is an oversupply for local mills.
Scrap Metal is usually picked up by Scrap Metal Recycler Ltd, baled in Hamilton and sent to Auckland. Scrap metal is shredded in Auckland, magnets take out copper and aluminium, and then the metal is put into a furnace (within a day of arriving in Ak) to make reinforcing steel.
Steel Cans are 100% recyclable. They can be recycled over and over again into new products like bikes, steel reinforcing rods, fencing wire and of course new steel cans. Most steel is recycled in NZ.
Aluminium cans, a process is undertaken to separate the aluminium from the oxygen. Once the aluminium is separated, it can be used to make a new aluminium can and other aluminium products. Most aluminium is sent to Australia or Japan for recycling.
Plastic is compressed into bales and sent to national and international markets. Compacting a high volume of lightwieght recyclables enables us to reduce the volume and therefore fit more bales into the truck. The more we fit into the truck, the less gas we use in transportation. It also aids storage until they are picked up. Most plastics are sold overseas at the moment. Number ones (soft drink bottles) are often used used in the garment industry to be made into polar fleece. Numbers two's - milk bottles are primarily made into plastics like recycling crates - it takes 32 milk bottles to make an average sized recycling crate !. The plastic is packed as densely as possible which can result in any stray lids flying out of the baler at high speed, which can be dangerous. This is one of the reasons why we ask you to remove the lids.