In 2015, over 766,800 tonnes, or 1,690,504,763 lbs, of plastic waste was disposed of (Source: nea.gov.sg). Only 7% of that was recycled... ONLY 7%! We use plastic for almost everything... from bottles, food containers and bags to the sidings of houses and car parts and everything in between... including hula hoops. Plastics are complex chemical compounds with thousands of varieties, which make them a bit more difficult to recycle than simpler compounds like paper, glass and metal. On top of that, plastics must be collected, sorted by exact type, kept clean, processed, and then delivered to a manufacturer that has the intention and capability to use the material for a new product... which will inevitably end up in a landfill one day. Although we can't completely solve this waste crisis, every little bit helps make a difference. Here are a few things you can do to help us and yourself move toward being more eco-friendly. I also included information on how and where to recycle specific tubing. We love and value our planet and hope that you do too! - Recycle the shipping box. When not wet or contaminated with food or oil, cardboard is recyclable. It is also naturally biodegradable, but it’s always a good idea to put it in the recycling bin instead of leaving it as litter. You can also use these boxes to store hoops. It's actually better for your hoops too rather than hanging them, which can warp your hoop into that unwanted tear-drop shape. Some things to keep in mind: Boxes that aren’t fully flattened are much more difficult to transport and present problems for mechanisms in the cardboard recycling process, so try to flatten your box out before sending it off. ALSO, tape and labels can be left on cardboard, as they are usually removed at recycling facilities (but I'd remove them away). - Download your invoice & instructions or recycle the paper they are printed on. We now offer the option to download your order invoice and the instructions regarding your hoop rather than printing it on paper. Even though we use tree-free, recycled paper, downloading is still the best option. If you do want a physical copy, put that paper in the recycling bin! - Choose bare hoops over taped ones. I know, the taped hoops are so pretty! But the wax paper peeled off the back of the tape is not. Paper is recycled with water, so adding any type of oil (wax) to the mix essentially contaminates and ruins the batch. Plus, bare hoops are easier to recycle if you don't have to scratch off all the tape residue left over. - DON'T throw away those hoops! If you're about to throw away your hoop, please reconsider!! Hoops can easily be retaped, downsized, or fixed if broken (Hoop Doctor repair service). If you want to do it yourself, I can provide you with hoop making supplies and will gladly walk you through the process of hoopsmithing! Hoops can just as easily be gifted to someone else, used for DIY projects or sent to me! I'd love to take your old hoop off your hands and even pay for the shipping here! Just contact me so we can make arrangements :) >> Click here for some great DIY ideas and tutorials! - If you must throw away your hoop, at least recycle it. Prepare the tubing for recycling: Before you recycle your hoop, be sure to remove tape and all adhesive residue. Remove the hardware or cut out a section that includes the hardware. You can purchase PVC cutters at almost any hardware store for about $10-$15. These are also handy for cutting down large pieces of tubing into smaller, more manageable pieces. Polypro: Polypropylene is a #5 plastic. Although polypropylene packaging is used for hundreds of products, a limited number of communities have curbside #5 plastic collection to make it easy for residents to recycle this common household waste. If your community doesn’t have curbside polypropylene recycling, don’t despair. Rather than trashing these resources, you can recycle them at Whole Foods locations across the country. Preserve, a company working with Whole Foods to collect polypropylene, recycles these materials into useful products, like cutting boards, plates, toothbrushes, razors and cutlery. Don’t have a Whole Foods near you? Preserve also offers a number of mail-in programs and Gimme 5 Drop Off recycling programs to help keep your polypropylene out of landfills and in the recycling stream. (Source: earth911.com) HDPE: High-density polyethylene is a #2 plastic and the easiest to recycle. Many of our everyday containers are made of HDPE (even Tupperware!) so recycling is important and prevalent. It is often recycled into plastic lumber, rope, trash and recycling bins, and even more tubing! Most all drop-off recycling centers accept HDPE and will distinguish and separate between clear, white or color there. (Source: Wastecare Corporation) PEX: Unfortunately, PEX (cross-linked polyethylene) tubing is very rarely recycled due to the fact that it has a long life cycle and can't be melted down to create new tubing. Fortunately for you though, these hoops are perfect for DIY projects! (Source: PexUniverse.com) To find a recycling location near you, call 1-800-Recycling!