Honest Tea has launched a national recycling initiative called “The Great Recycle,” which will launch in New York City’s Times Square on Monday, April 30.
In a show of support for New York City’s pledge to double recycle efforts by 2017, Honest Tea and partners GrowNYC, Recyclebank, Coca-Cola Live Positively, Global Inheritance and Five-Boro Green Services will place a 30-foot tall recycling bin in Times Square and attempt to crowd-source recycle more than 45,000 plastic, glass and aluminum beverage containers in ten hours. The plastic bottles collected will be recycled into essential gardening supplies including shovels, watering cans and plastic lumber, which will be used to build and cultivate an urban garden for PS 102, an elementary school in Harlem.
“National recycling rates are nowhere near where they need to be,” says Honest Tea co-founder and TeaEO Seth Goldman. “Honest Tea is committed to finding ways to help Americans recycle more. We’ve helped install recycling bins in our hometown of Bethesda, MD and now it’s time to expand our efforts.”
At the event in Times Square, bottles will act as currency. People who bring bottles down to “The Great Recycle” will be awarded points for each bottle recycled, that can be redeemed at the onsite TRASHed Recycling Store run by Global Inheritance. There, points can be redeemed for rewards such as cold bottles of Honest Tea, T-shirts and reusable bags, jeans, video games and tickets to sporting events, concerts and Broadway shows.
“New York City is a world leader in many areas and is committed to actions that secure a sustainable and livable future for all residents. The goal to double the waste diversion rate includes initiatives like expanding access to recycling in public spaces, and other initiatives that will make it even easier to do the right thing. This is just one component of the Mayor’s efforts to make New York City one of the greenest, most livable cities,” says David Hurd, the Director of Office of Recycling Outreach & Education for GrowNYC. “Recycling beverage containers is a simple everyday way to combat climate change and reduce the cost of exporting our waste to other states.”
Those who cannot attend the event in Times Square will have an opportunity to participate in “The Great Recycle” by logging onto www.TheGreatRecycle.com and making a recycling pledge and then solidifying it by recycling an old Facebook post. By taking the pledge, users will be rewarded with Recyclebank points which can be redeemed for discounts and deals from more than 3,000 local and national businesses in categories ranging from food and beverage to health and beauty, restaurants, entertainment, sports and recreation, apparel, automotive, electronics and more.
Honest Tea partnered with TerraCycle in 2007 to create the Drink Pouch Brigade, a program, which recycles drink pouches and ‘upcycles’ them into items such as pencil cases, book bags, and notebooks. Since 2007, nearly 1 million Honest Kids pouches have been diverted from landfills. The Drink Pouch Brigades now divert more drink pouches from the waste stream than Honest Tea produces each year.
In 2008, Honest Tea partnered with Bethesda Green and The Coca-Cola Company to install 33 recycling bins throughout downtown Bethesda. Within the first year the bins collected more than 4,000 pounds of recyclable beverage containers.