Trex Company is offering free recyclability testing to packaging engineers, manufacturers, and brand owners through its NexTrex™ Recycling Program. Each year, Trex diverts more than 400 million pounds of plastic film, bags and wrap from landfills and uses it to manufacture its industry-leading composite decking, which is made from 95% recycled material. Among its largest sources are retailers and makers of consumer packaged goods who partner with Trex to responsibly dispose of plastic shopping bags and polyethylene film used to wrap products and pallets. This testing validates whether the material is capable of being recycled in the Trex recycling stream.

“Trex invented composite decking more than 25 years ago as a way to reduce waste generated from plastic bags,” explained Dave Heglas, senior director of material management for Trex Company. “Today, we are one of the largest recyclers of plastic film in North America and a leader in educating and engaging both the commercial and consumer sectors in recycling efforts.”

To help brands determine whether their packaging qualifies for the NexTrex Recycling Program, Trex will test select packaging items for free. Packaging designers, producers, and brand owners can simply send in a packaged product sample and Trex will provide them with a comprehensive report assessing three areas for acceptance: package/film recyclability, affect/risk of product contamination, and affect/risk of non-recyclable “look-a-like” package contamination, so that they can make adjustments as needed to meet recyclability standards and/or select appropriate recycling method.

The following is a current list of acceptable packaging and film for Trex recycling programs:

  • Distribution/manufacturing film-stretch
  • Grocery and retail bags
  • Bread and produce bags
  • Case overwraps
  • Dry cleaning bags/film
  • Newspaper sleeves
  • Ice and salt bags
  • Ziploc and other reclose-able bags
  • Flexible PE e-commerce mailers
  • PE packaging, such as bubble wrap and foam
  • Heat sheets
  • Cereal box liners
  • Wood pellet bags
  • Carpet overwrap
  • Mattress bags

“By giving recycled plastic film a second life as high-performance, low-maintenance composite decking, Trex is providing a solution to manufacturers’ plastic waste problems,” said Heglas. “Our free testing program is intended to encourage more manufacturers to participate and take advantage of this ‘win-win’ scenario, while ensuring that the plastic we are collecting meets our high standards for production.”

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