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Trek Moving to Fully Recyclable Bike Packaging

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As every bike shop owner knows, unpacking and building every new bike that arrives into their store generates a huge pile of rubbish.  

The largest item, the bike box itself may be easily recyclable, but much of the foam and plastic used inside to protect the new bike is far more problematic for the environment. 

On Friday 30th October Trek released details of its new bike box and internal packaging and made a commitment to move to 100% recyclable and plastic-free packaging. 

Trek joined the Responsible Packaging Movement earlier this year. The fashion brand Prana launched the movement earlier this year. 

Since May, Trek’s has shipped its most popular bike model, the Marlin, in overhauled packaging that reduces the number of non-recyclable pieces from 22 to 12 — a change that Trek said has eliminated more than 22,000 kilograms of plastic waste.  In 2021, Trek’s bike packaging will be plastic-free aside from two small parts, the company said. 

“We set out to reimagine this product, simplify it, and decrease our impact,” said Trek’s packaging development manager, Kevin Rogers. “But packaging is only one step on our broader path. Another big one is education.” 

Trek initiated a campaign this month to educate retail partners and customers on responsible recycling of Trek and Bontrager packaging. Detailed instructions on how to recycle Trek and Bontrager packaging, along with a breakdown of the recyclable and non-recyclable pieces, can be found at trekbikes.com/recycle. 

Trek said it will release a 2020 Sustainability Report later this year with more details on its sustainability efforts. 

In recent months, Specialized and Vaast, among others have announced more sustainable bike packaging. Cannondale recently announced that it is adopting 100% recyclable packaging in Europe. 

This article was first published in Bicycle Retailer and Industry News (BRAIN) 

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