Global speciality materials company Eastman and Food City, a grocery retailer, have launched the first of three plastic recycling collection bins in Kingsport, Tennessee, US.  

The companies stated that this partnership reflects their respective commitments to a circular economy and reducing the environmental footprint of plastic waste.  

Through the joint programme, ‘Shop, Recycle, Repeat’, announced last November, customers in the state can drop off their plastic waste at the aforementioned bins. 

The scheme offers accessible recycling options to customers in the area following the discontinuation of kerbside pickup services. 

The collected plastic will be sorted and processed at Eastman’s new mixed plastics facility, which is part of its molecular recycling plant, claimed to be the largest material-to-material recycling plant globally.  

Eastman executive vice-president and CCO Brad Lich said: “We’re excited to unveil the first recycling bins and are so proud that they were designed and created by talented Eastman craftspeople who work at our facility in Kingsport.  

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“This partnership is an important step in our region to bring additional plastics recycling options to our community and demonstrates our shared vision for a more sustainable future, where plastic waste is seen as a valuable resource that can be transformed into new products.” 

The Shop, Recycle, Repeat programme is currently available at three Food City stores in Kingsport, with plans to extend to additional locations in the region.  

Customers can drop off various plastic items such as shampoo bottles, trays, and containers at the points.

Last month, Eastman joined forces with Rumpke Waste & Recycling to expand the recycling of hard-to-recycle and coloured PET packaging waste.