The project provided educational materials and a Terracycle cork recycling box to local spirits shop.
TerraCycle is a recycling company for recycling hard-to-recycle materials. They offer a range of free programs, as well as recycling solutions available for purchase for almost every form of waste.
To make it happen, we followed this process: Reached out to the store, they were super excited, had been looking for somewhere to recycle corks meaning we didn't have to pitch it hard. EEC received updates and provided feedback. C3 ordered the box, gave store education on how it worked. Store installed box and people are using it! We provided the store with educational handouts on waste as well from C3.
How Terracycle works:
HOW IT WORKS
- Order: Select a Zero Waste Box system and place your order.
- Collect: Collect the accepted items to fill the system.
- Ship: Send it back to TerraCycle with the prepaid return label on your system.*
- Reorder: Order your next Zero Waste Box system to continue to recycle everything.
This is the letter that was sent to the store's owner proposing the program.
Subject Line: Cork Recycling Proposal from Edgewater Environmental Coalition
Renee Patten here, In Fine Spirits lover, wine lover, regular customer, and co-chair of the Edgewater Environmental Coalition (EEC). EEC is working at the local level on global challenges. At EEC, we are a coalition of community members and environmental stewards. Bringing a green voice to local challenges, we empower people to build and maintain a more sustainable future through action, organizing, education, and advocacy. We are rooted in advancing a healthy and verdant Edgewater.
I have a proposal for you that will generate excitement for your business, give back to the community, and create marketing opportunities. It's also funded, all upfront costs will be covered by EEC.
Problem to be addressed: Corks are not recyclable in the City of Chicago. By loving and supporting your local business, your customers have a lot of corks that are a valuable resource for recycling and don't have a way to recycle them.
Opportunity: Marketing & promotion with EEC, community asset & improvement, doing a socially and environmentally easy & responsible thing! This would be a pilot project for the organization that members would hope to showcase and replicate across the city.
Solution: EEC purchases In Fine Spirits a Large (or any size) Terracycle Corks - Zero Waste Box. You host the box, customers/staff fill it up, and the shop ships it out when it gets full. Then the cycle repeats.
Are you interested in exploring this with me? If not you, happy to discuss further and/or coordinate with one of your staff members.
Thank you so much for thinking about it and I look forward to your reply.
Be well and take care,
Materials provided to the store:
- Alternative Methods of Responsible Waste Disposal
- Blue Cart Recycling flyers
- Green Condo/Apartment Checklist
- ‘What’s in the Trash?’ Waste Audit
Additional Cork Recycling Resource:
ReCORK recork.com firstname.lastname@example.org
ReCORK collects and recycles natural cork wine stoppers into consumer goods such as yoga blocks and shoe parts. The company is a project backed by an alliance of businesses and individuals hoping to promote sustainable business practices and create environmental change.
Accepts: Natural used corks (any shape or condition)
Does not accept: Synthetic stoppers
Free dropoff at multiple dropoff locations (see website for locations)
Will accept large quantities of cork as direct mail shipment (at least 15 lbs of cork.