Recycling - a Small Act Consumers Can Take to Make a Big Difference


(NewsUSA) - November 15 is America Recycles Day – a day to celebrate recycling and encourage people to be mindful of what they consume and where and how to recycle. While it seems like an easy task, only 32 percent of waste is recycled, according to the EPA. Barriers to recycling include limited access to recycling bins, lack of recycling facilities and not knowing what can and can’t be recycled.

Regarding that last point, did you know that pet food cans, which are made from aluminum and steel, are recyclable? No need to peel off the label; just rinse the can and put the lid inside. However, recycling pet food cans is important because using recycled aluminum cans to make new aluminum cans takes 95 percent less energy than making new cans from raw materials.  

“Making a difference can be easy, and Purina has launched the #PurinaRecyclesChallenge to encourage pet owners to help make an impact by recycling their pet food cans,” says Gopi Sandhu, Vice President of Environmental Sustainability at Purina. “Aluminum and steel cans can be reused over and over when recycled, but we need pet owners’ help to get pet food cans into the recycling bin. We want to help create a healthier planet for pets and people for generations to come, and recycling pet food cans is a small step that we can take.”

To participate in the #PurinaRecyclesChallenge, pet owners can upload their best recycling trick shot video to Instagram and/or TikTok using the hashtag #PurinaRecyclesChallenge. Trick shots can be as simple as tossing a pet food can into the bin or as elaborate as the use of a Rube Goldberg machine. Through December 15, 2023, Purina will donate $10 for every original video posted using the hashtag and $1 for every engagement (like/share/comment) for a total donation of up to $100,000 to The Recycling Partnership to help increase access to recycling across the country.

Beyond participating in the challenge, keep these simple tips in mind to make a difference through recycling:

-Check the labels: Look on product packaging for specific recycling instructions. On Purina products, for example, look for the How2Recycle icon. Ask local waste haulers or community recycling centers to verify if a specific material is acceptable for single-stream recycling. 

-Check the dates: Know the recyclable collection days in your neighborhood and note that holidays may affect these days and times. For updated information, visit your local recycling programs’ website.

-Shop sustainably: Many brands use recycled materials in their packaging or design packaging with recycling in mind. Currently, nearly 90 percent of Purina’s plastic packages are designed for recycling. In addition, nearly half of Purina’s Tidy Cats litter jugs are made with 60 percent post-consumer resin.

-Share and simplify: Keep recycling bins visible during gatherings, especially for guests; this makes recycling easy and encourages others to recycle at home.

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