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Recycle Your Butts

Every year, billions of cigarette butts end up in landfills, or get littered on beaches and sidewalks. But did you know that your business can recycle cigarette butts?

Terracycle.com has a free program for businesses to ship cigarette butts, ash and tobacco so they can be recycled.  Sign up on their website to receive instructions and postage-paid shipping labels.

The waste collected through this program is recycled into industrial products like plastic pallets. Even the tobacco and ash are recycled via composting!

How to Sign Up:

Sign up at www.terracycle.com. You will need:

  1. A contact person to oversee the recycling program at your location
  2. A valid email address

This will allow you to receive free shipping labels from Terracycle, track your impact, and receive program correspondence.  Search “Cigarette Waste Recycling Program” and click the link.  Then click “SIGN UP NOW!” and your business will be ready to start recycling.

How to Start:

To participate in the Cigarette Waste Recycling Program at your business after signing up, empty the contents of your ash receptacle into a sturdy trash bag or thick garbage liner.  Then place full bags into a shipping box. Please make sure that the cigarettes are fully extinguished. Do not dump your cigarette waste directly into the shipping box.

When you are ready to ship your waste, download a free shipping label from your TerraCycle account and affix it to your box of cigarette waste. You can then drop it off at any UPS location for free.

How are Cigarettes Recycled?

Once your cigarette waste shipment is received by Terracycle, the cigarettes and packaging are separated by composition.  Filters are melted into hard plastic that can be remolded to make new recycled industrial products, such as plastic pallets. The ash and tobacco are separated out and composted in a specialized process.