Tablet blister packs are a recycling nightmare – which bin do they go in? Before you decide – STOP! Don’t be a ‘wishcycler’*.
Blister packs are made of mixed materials – metal and plastic – so not for the recycling bin as they would contaminate the rest of the recycled waste.
* Wishcycler is a term used to describe putting something in recycling when you’re not sure if it is recyclable in the hope that it will be recycled. Unfortunately, this often ends up spoiling the rest of the batch of recycling causing more harm than good.
So how do you get rid of them? ACE Waste group have found a solution for Aylsham residents.
Superdrug tried until demand became too much, and they had to stop. Aldi sponsored a scheme where you could post them to Terracycle but this has been paused after, again, they were inundated.
However, ACE Waste are now able to offer a medicine tablet blister pack collection for Aylsham residents:
- Go to the Earthglade market stall in Aylsham Market place on Mondays and Fridays
- or at the monthly Quaker refill stall, at Aylsham Food and Craft Market on the first Saturday of every month.
None of the global pharmaceutical companies are prepared to sponsor the recycling of these medicine tablet blister packs despite many of us having no option but to use them as part of prescribed medication.
This means that the cost of recycling them falls to us the consumer, and it’s not cheap. The only publicly available scheme to get these recycled currently costs 2.5p per blister pack. That’s around £5 for a small carrier bag full.
How can I help?
We ask for a small donation when you use this service to help keep it going, but please don’t feel obliged.
If you would like to donate a larger amount, perhaps if you intend to use this regularly, you can also donate by going to the crowdfunding page on JustGiving.
Or write to the manufacturers of the medication you are on and ask them to sponsor a scheme for the packs to be recycled.
Consumers and the planet should not have to pay for their waste.
By Michael Dolling
9 Dec 2023