What weighs as much as 130 Boeing 747-8 airplanes, 29 space shuttles (fuel and all) or a couple of average-sized cruise ships? The answer might surprise you: The equivalent of millions of pounds of HP cartridges and hardware by Staples and HP.
When HP unveiled the HP Planet Partners program 25 years ago, the idea behind it was simple: make it free and easy for customers to recycle their used HP cartridges or any brand of used computing equipment.
Ten years ago, the program was reinvented to make it easier: Establish a chain of return and recycling “drop-off” points at partner retail locations around the world. To make it work, HP needed partners who would not only offer incentives to customers, but also make it easy to recycle their used HP ink and toner cartridges.
The plan quickly attracted one the largest office supply stores in the United States – Staples – which made it a core part of its loyalty program, and expanded it to include hardware drop off locations over time.
A decade later, it has quietly become a shining example for how high tech and retail can partner to advance the recovery and recycling loops for the emerging “Circular Economy.”
Today, in tandem with America Recycles Day, HP shared that its work with Staples has made measureable impact. Overall, it’s resulted in the global recyclingof more than 128 million pounds of hardware and HP supplies.
“The ink and toner recycling program is an important part of Staples’ overall tech recycling program, and it’s been very popular over the years,” said Eric Cayton, Vice President and GMM at Staples. “Customers like it because it gives them a quick and simple way to recycle and, at the same time, contributes to the health of the environment.”
About 80 percent of Original HP Ink cartridges and 100 percent of Original HP toner cartridges contain recycled content, with a portion of that coming from Staples customers. Customers purchasing at least $30 of original HP ink or toner can return spent HP cartridges to any Staples outlet and receive credits toward future purchases, discounts and other perks.
Staples then ships them to HP, which to process each return through a multi-phase recycling process.
In the video below, learn about HP Ink cartridge recycling:
The end result: No returned HP print cartridges are sent to landfills. Instead, the materials are sorted, broken down into raw materials and recycled responsibly. The materials are blended with other new and recycled plastic items (such as used clothes hangers and bottles) to create new HP print cartridges.
The cartridges (with recycled content) are then offered for sale at Staples and other locations—closing the loop. Other Authorized HP cartridge recycling partners include Best Buy, Office Depot, Office Max and Walmart.
Earlier this year, HP marked the 25th anniversary of the Planet Partners program, which over the years has turned recycled plastic into more than 3 billion new HP print cartridges.
“Our collaboration with Staples is a great example of how we can partner for greater benefit to our customers and the environment,” said Joe Pacula, Head of the Americas, HP Supplies business. “We are fully committed to helping customers recycle, plus buy products with recycled content.”
Customers who wish to take part can bring their used IT equipment or HP cartridges to Staples, or find other recycling options at www.hp.com/recycle.