#30 – Special Episode

Call to buy recycled plastic products

In this episode of Plastics Revolution, we have a very special show during the Covid-19 crisis.  There are three new challenges for the recycled plastic industry right now, and you can actually help as a consumer by buying more recycled plastic products.

It’s clear that businesses have been impacted in various ways – some for the better, but many for the worse.

The recycled plastics industry is really one of those that is hurting right now – not because of the lack of materials. All my sources say that recycling levels really haven’t change.  The challenge is that the buyer market has been greatly impacted first by the China Sword in 2018 when Asian country buyers quit taking a lot of the recycled plastics that western countries generated.

Three New Challenges for the Recycled Plastic Industry

Now, we have a new crisis which is putting the industry in a really challenging space due to multiple threats. This includes:

  1. Significant Increase single use plastic not just with personal protection equipment but have you noticed the take-away coffee cups and plastic take-away containers spilling out of council bins lately?
  2. Price of oil at an all-time low impacting the difference in prices between:
    • Virgin plastic versus recycled plastic
    • Waste to energy compared to petrochemicals
    • Biochemical or bioplastics alternatives compared to petrochemical

What this means that it’s more far more expensive for manufacturers to make environmentally friendly decisions about their packaging and energy needs.

  1. Government councils have suddenly reduced their spending on products that are made of recycled plastic as their priorities are directed elsewhere right now.

What this means is that we have way more plastic to recycle than ever, but there is less demand for this material which means that it could go into landfill if this doesn’t change.

So, what can you do as a consumer?

I’ve been in touch with a number of our previous guests, and I want to share with you 3 products that you can personal buy made from recycled plastic that will make a difference..


Episode #2 – Stephanie Stubbe of Anipal, they make dog collars from recycled plastic. Steph told me that they are currently selling their products in 60+ vet clinics around Australia, but you can pick one up at their website.

They’re also expanding their product range and creating further sustainable alternatives for the pet & vet industry.  So, stay tone for future announcements about that.  In the meantime, check out their website at https://anipal.com.au/

Plastic Forests

In Episode #9 and #10 – I spoke with David Hodge of Plastic Forests.  They take plastic like from the Redcycle bins you see at Coles and Woolies and turn it into products.  Just recently, they’ve release some heart shape and circular, above ground garden beds that you can purchase for your own yards.

The heart one in particular is something I love because not only does it look great, but I also think it would be easier to reach your veggies or flowers in the middle of the bed. Check it out at https://plasticforests.com.au/shop/

Recycled Mats

Finally, you might remember JJ Stranan of Recycled Mats from Episode #19.  She has a number of products made from recycled plastic including some made from old car tires.

In late May, she’ll have some new mats being released. She’s given me and now you a sneak preview though.  One that I really love is of a kangaroo designed by aboriginal artist, Dale Austin.

This 95% recycled plastic mat tells a story that comes from the Gagadju people.

This product should be available in late May.  In the meantime, you can see her other products at https://www.recycledmats.com.au/

Why am I promoting these businesses?

These are not paid endorsements.

I highlight these businesses because as I and many of our guests have said:

Plastics are not recycled if they are only collected.  They are recycled when they are turned into something else.” 

Right now, businesses like this need conscious consumers more than ever to help them get through this difficult time.

So, I’m encouraging you to not only to recycle, but to buy products like these from recycled plastic. Together, we help keep the circular economy going during these challenging times and reduce the amount of plastic waste that ends up in landfills and hurt Mother Nature.

Next Time

Thanks for joining me today on this podcast. If you’ve found anything interesting or helpful, I’d really appreciate it if you’d subscribe to the show and to tell others.

Stay tune next week as I chat to another innovator, change maker or fellow entrepreneur who is leading the Plastics Revolution.

Be kind to animals and Mother Nature.


Hosted by Tammy Ven Dange
Produced by Jonny Puskas
Theme Music by Joseph McDade
All Rights Reserved 2020

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Tammy Ven Dange

IT Consultant for the Not for Profit Sector | Host of "Executive with a Cause" Podcast

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