Amazon's Plastic Packaging Spells Trouble In Recycling Centers

By Bethany Ivie

February 18, 2019

Amazon's Plastic Packaging Spells Trouble In Recycling Centers

In This Article

  • Amazon's plastic packaging is causing big problems in recycling facilities in the U.S.
  • Waste management facilities are asking recyclers to please stop including Amazon's plastic packaging in their bins.
  • The non-recyclable packaging gets caught in the machines and requires manual labor to remove.

Recycling centers everywhere have a message for us, fellow online shoppers:  stop recycling Amazon's plastic packaging. I know. I’ve done it too. But recycling facilities around the U.S. report that Amazon's new plastic packaging is gumming up machines. Not only is this a waste employee time as laborers have to manually remove the tattered plastic, but these snafus also cause the entire system to shut down and recycling to pile up. And Amazon’s not the only culprit: Blue Apron’s freezer packs (along with every plastic bag known to man) are also culpable.

Unsure about what plastics you  can  recycle or how you can reduce your household waste? Take a look at the following guides: 

Thanks to consumer requests, Amazon is on track to launch a line of recyclable paper packaging ... at an undisclosed time in the future. Amazon's shift from cardboard boxes (which can be recycled) to plastic packaging originally came about to save space in company vans so that more packages could be shipped quickly. In the meantime, there are shops out there that are dedicated to shipping their wares in a sustainable way. Among them are: