Sunday, April 14, 2024

Practically Living Green

Showing practical reasons to live green.


Hot Sauce Packets from Taco Bell Will be Recyclable By 2024

Taco Bell is looking to become more sustainable by introducing recyclable hot sauce packets. To do this, it is partnering with TerraCycle to become the first company in its industry to produce recyclable condiment packets.

Each year, in just the United States, 8.2 billion Taco Bell hot sauce packets are used. However, not a single one of them is recyclable. And in many cases, unused packets are just thrown away.

Thus, it requires new material to replace each hot sauce packet. And that’s just one fast-food chain. Other sauce packets like ketchup and mustard have an even greater impact.

However, with its new partnership, Taco Bell hopes to set an industry standard.

Why Are Condiment Packets Not Recyclable


Condiments packets have been around for decades, and they have changed over time. Modern packets are a combination of foil and plastic that have been fused together. And it is very hard to separate the two materials.

As a result, they cannot be recycled easily or at all.

This type of material is not exclusive to condiment packets either. Toothpaste tubes, Capri Sun containers, and many other products all use this technique to build squeezable pouches.

In general, recycling centers can only handle very basic materials. Once another substance is mixed in, it would require an entirely different system. In most cases, corporations have their own recycling centers.

For instance, Apple has it’s own recycling center to disassemble and reuse components from old iPhones.

Now that the world is moving towards a greener future, finding a more sustainable solution is essential.

TerraCycle Helps Large Companies Go Green

Without a doubt, large companies have some of the biggest impacts on our world, thus, helping them go green is essential, However, it’s not easy to make these kinds of changes when you have over 7,000 stores.

That’s where TerraCycle comes in.

This New Jersey-based company has been helping larger companies go green for quite some time. In fact, its already helped companies like Nestlé use recyclable packaging in their most popular packages.

TerraCycle focuses on providing solutions to single-use plastics. These products find their way into the ocean, landfills, our streets, and just about everywhere else. By reusing them, we can help reduce plastic waste.

And if nothing is done, there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean by 2050.

Taco Bell is Opening the Door for the Industry

While some of the condiment packet manufacturers are working towards the same goal, Taco Bell is the first fast-food company to really push the initiative forward. According to its plans, hot sauce packets should be fully recyclable by 2024.

That’s a full year earlier than Heinz, the most popular ketchup brand in the world.

This move will actually put pressure on other fast-food chains like McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, and all of your favorites. In just the United States, there are 196,839 fast-food restaurants.

Taco bell, surprisingly, only represents a small number of that. Thus to have the impact the industry needs, more companies need to make changes.

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Robert Giaquinto

Robert has been following and writing about environmental stories for years at GreenGeeks. He believes that highlighting environmentally friendly practices can help promote change in every household.

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