The EPS Industry Alliance recently announced the winner of its annual Excellence in Recycling Award, giving the top honor to the Massachusetts-based organization ReFoamIt®. The EPS Industry Alliance serves as an advocacy group for individuals and organizations within the EPS industry and supports efforts and legislation that further the success of its members. EPS, or expanded polystyrene foam, is often mistakenly referred to as Styrofoam®, which is a registered trademark of the Dow Chemical Company. Expanded polystyrene foam is the material that makes up many of the foodservice items consumers prefer, such as hot beverage cups and take-out containers.
This year’s Excellence in Recycling Award winner, ReFoamIt®, is an organization founded in 2009 by David and Barbara Sherman of Framingham, Massachusetts. After recognizing the need within their own community for an easy yet responsible way to recycle EPS foam materials, the couple established their organization with the mission to recycle as much foam as possible and educate their community through recycling activities. They accomplish this through organizing foam collection events throughout Massachusetts and by accepting discarded foam to be recycled at their own processing facility. In 2013, ReFoamIt® hosted 60 different foam collection events, which each brought in 30 to 40 cubic yards of foam waste. The organization is continually working with local government agencies, businesses and hospitals to responsibly remove foam from area landfills and educate the members of their community.
Several other organizations and municipalities were also recognized by the EPS Industry Alliance for their efforts. Among these was the City of Houston, Texas, which recently implemented the first foam recycling program of its kind within the region after its residents requested better recycling solutions throughout the city. The Houston recycling program now collects 2,000 lbs. of expanded polystyrene foam per month from its residents. Also recognized was the organization Nine Lives Products, which has developed a way to naturally recycle polystyrene foam into different types of glue available for consumer purchase.
The EPS Industry Alliance awards are meant to acknowledge organizations and entities that go above and beyond in the effort to improved and promote foam recycling, as well as education consumers on its importance. The goal of these awards is to not only recognize these organizations as outstanding representation of the industry, but also to further promote polystyrene foam as a sustainable material.
Source: Digital Journal