What to do with all of that pallet wrap once it’s removed? An early August scrap-supply agreement between Fastenal and Trex Company Inc. provides a helpful solution to big piles of polyethylene film.
Trex manufactures wood-alternative composite decking, railing and other outdoor building products from recycled materials. Its entire portfolio of composite decking is made from 95 percent recycled and reclaimed materials, including a mix of PE film and industrial wood scrap.
Each year, Trex repurposes in excess of one billion pounds of reclaimed materials, including approximately 400 million pounds of plastic film, making it one of the largest recyclers of PE film in North America. Through its NexTrex Recycling Program, Trex partners with commercial businesses and community organizations across the country to collect and transport recycled plastic material.
Through the partnership, Fastenal collects used PE film in its distribution centers, branches and customer-specific onsite locations and ships it through the NexTrex Recycling Program to its manufacturing facilities in Winchester, Virginia and Fernley, Nevada.
“Pallet wrap is vital to our daily operations, but once the product is unwrapped, we have no use for it,” said Dave Olson, director of EHS and sustainability for Fastenal. “Working with Trex to turn all that potential waste into sustainable outdoor building products is a win for both organizations.”
To support the program, Fastenal has invested more than $300,000 in equipment and infrastructure in its United States distribution centers to efficiently bale and consolidate used PE film for recycling by Trex.
In the first year of the program, Fastenal expects to divert an estimated 600,000 pounds of plastic from landfills via material collected within its distribution centers where a high volume of pallet wrap is received as part of inbound shipments from suppliers. In addition, more than 2,500 U.S. Fastenal branches and Onsite locations can participate by using Fastenal’s regular truck routes to back-haul used material to the nearest distribution center for baling, consolidation and shipment to Trex.
On O‘ahu, there are five Fastenal locations in ‘Aiea, Honolulu, Kāne‘ohe, Kapolei and Pearl City; and neighbor Island locations in Hilo, Kailua-Kona and Wailuku.