The Evolving Glass Recycling Industry
Cynthia Andela, President and CEO of Andela Products, was recently included in a glass recycling report published by American Recycler News.
Glass is the preferred packaging of choice for many consumers. It is 100 percent recyclable and is a crucial piece of the glass manufacturing supply chain. Historically, the message surrounding glass recycling has been that recycled glass is only for bottle production.
“About two to three million tons of glass gets recycled now. There is a lot of glass still going to the landfills,” Andela said.
Americans throw away about 9 to 11 million tons of glass per year. Typically, collected glass is transported to a single-stream material recovery facility (MRF). This glass is broken, and mixed with shredded paper and other non-glass substances.
“This makes the glass more expensive to clean up and recycle into bottles or fiberglass. The investment to clean it and transport it to a glass recycling company that will make it furnace-ready cullet is cost prohibitive. The company operating the MRF often owns the landfill, so the glass ends up as landfill cover, which is the most convenient and least expensive option for them.”
Andela Products has been manufacturing glass pulverizer machines for over 25 years. Our machines pulverize post-consumer waste glass back to clean glass sand and aggregate.
“Disney, Rotary Clubs, and independent recyclers (Glass Half Full) are publicly showing their enthusiasm for turning glass back to sand.”
Last year, Andela Products partnered with a landscape research team to analyze mixtures of glass sand with compost. Tests indicate that glass-based soil (GBS) is viable soil with uniquely beneficial properties, creating a ciruclar solution for the recycling world.