Portreath-based charity raises money by recycling the ‘unrecyclable’

Dawn Thompson and Karen Jeffereys from Upcycle Kernow with their accepted waste poster and some of the waste they have collected.

Upcycle Kernow, a Portreath-based community interest company, has raised more than £2,000 by collecting “unrecyclable” waste from the community to be recycled.  

The waste collected includes cheese packaging, bread bags, personal care and beauty products and packaging, oral care products, home cleaning products and packaging, biscuit and snack wrappers and much more.

This waste is not included in council kerbside recycling collections so has traditionally been destined for landfills or incineration.

Once dropped off at Upcycle Kernow CIC, the waste is sent for recycling with TerraCycle, the world leader in recycling hard-to-recycle waste.

For every unit of waste collected, TerraCycle points are earned which are redeemed as monetary donations to Upcycle Kernow. These donations enable the charity to spread awareness of the issue of waste and the skills needed to rethink resources.

The 24/7 drop-off location was set up by Upcycle Kernow team members Dawn Thompson and Karen Jeffereys after they signed up to a number of TerraCycle’s free recycling programmes. These include the Colgate and Hello Oral Care Recycling Programme, the Cathedral City Cheese Packaging Recycling Programme, the pladis Biscuits and Snacks Recycling Programme and the Carex Recycling Programme.

More than 300,000 pieces of waste have been collected so far, and local residents are encouraged to continue drop off their waste at Upcycle Kernow CIC, Portreath retail Park, New Portreath Road, TR16 4QL. Ensuring it is recycled rather than being sent to landfill or incineration, helps to boost the company’s fundraising efforts. 

Ms Thompson, Upcycle Kernow CIC’s Project Leader, explains:

 “As a community group which aims to emphasise the importance of reuse and recycling, TerraCycle’s recycling programmes are a perfect fit.  Being able to raise money for Upcycle Kernow whilst also making it easier for the community to recycle is a great opportunity. So far our donations have enabled us to replace the dangerous broken doors for a lovely new front entrance, as well as supporting our Repair Cafe, and workshops upskilling grassroots communities. It has also helped volunteers continue with their climate action community work throughout the pandemic.”

The collected waste is sent to TerraCycle and is recycled by shredding, cleaning and turning into plastic pellets which can then be used by manufacturers to create new generic plastic products, such as outdoor equipment – reducing the need to extract new resources from the planet.

Ms Jeffereys, Terracycle Support, added:

“While it is absolutely essential we buy less, waste less, reuse, refill and repair  more, there are some occasions when we cannot avoid it. These programmes are currently the best solution for those types of waste. We encourage everyone in the area to get involved, to sort, save and bring their TerraCycle rubbish to our 24/7 drop-off location. It’s a great way to help reduce your environmental impact and support Upcycle Kernow community projects at the same time”

For more information about TerraCycle, or to find out how to get involved, head to https://www.terracycle.com/en-GB.

For more information about Upcycle Kernow, visit https://www.upcyclekernow.org/

This is a press release