Rural recycling rates hit a record high in Agrecovery’s last financial year with collection volumes growing by 24 percent and the programme posting its sixth consecutive year of growth.
In the 12 months to June 2013, around 8,000 farmers and growers diverted 507 tonnes of empty chemical containers, silage plastics and chemicals for recycling or safe disposal.
Other highlights for the year include a 30 percent jump in the number of people using Agrecovery, including a large increase in the number of pastoral farmers, and a 37 percent increase in the volume of unwanted or expired chemicals collected for safe disposal.
Agrecovery and the Waikato Regional Council collected a record six tonnes of hazardous horticultural, agricultural and veterinary chemicals from Waikato during a regional collection that finished last week.
That’s five times the amount collected in the Waikato in 2012 and the largest take back on record for the region since Agrecovery started collecting in 2010.
The increase was largely due to the support provided by the Waikato Regional Council and three of the region’s district councils—Waipa District Council, Hauraki District Council and Otorohanga District Council—that funded the recovery of chemicals that usually fall into the user-pays category.
The number of farmers and growers joining Agrecovery jumped by over 50 percent during the first quarter of 2013 due to the programme’s recent membership drive putting $5000 in rewards up for grabs.
All existing and new Agrecovery members who recycled their plastic agrichemical, animal health and dairy hygiene containers at any of 70 nationwide collection sites during February and March were put into the draw to win one of ten $500 vouchers to spend at the rural supplier of their choice.
The winners, ranging from Cambridge in the north to Balclutha in the south, came from a range of areas within the primary sector including orchards, dairy farms, sheep and beef farms, several vineyards and a golf club.
According to Duncan Scotland, Sales and Marketing Manager for Agrecovery, the incentive was a timely reminder for many to start their involvement with Agrecovery.
The Agrecovery Rural Recycling Programme featured on TV ONE's Rural Delivery on Saturday 16 March. Duncan Scotland was interviewed about the growth of the programme since its launch, what farmers and growers can recycle and dispose of through Agrecovery and how the service works.
Agrecovery is urging all farmers and growers to take a look in their sheds and get rid of any unwanted or expired chemicals through one of the eight regional agrichemical collections it has planned this year.
The first collections for 2013 start shortly in Waikato, Otago and Southland and those wanting to dispose of unwanted chemicals need to book with Agrecovery by 8 March. A collection in Canterbury is also planned shortly afterwards with bookings required by 22 March.
Many agrichemicals and animal health products are eligible for free disposal through the support of the 59 brand owners who participate in the Agrecovery programme, while others are subsidised through central government and some regional councils.