Ridwell exclusive

Clear plastic clamshells containers

This is an add-on category! Please opt in, use the provided blue bag, and leave it next to your bin.

Recycle your #1 PET clear plastic clamshells into new clamshells!

Why use Ridwell?

Unlike your municipal recycling system, we work directly with PET recyclers who specializes in clamshell containers. By collecting directly from our members, we can avoid any contamination that may occur in a mixed recycling bin, and ensure that your clamshells get a new life.

Your clamshells and trays are washed, reprocessed, and turned into FDA Food Grade materials to be used again in new clamshells and trays. This process leaves a minimal carbon footprint and helps create a circular world by turning recycled clamshells into new clamshells over and over, instead of winding up in our landfills, or worse... In the oceans, lakes, and rivers!


How it works

1

Collect your #1 PET plastic

Use the blue bag provided by Ridwell to collect your #1 PET plastic between pickups.

2

Add clamshells onto your pickup

From your pickup calendar, add a clamshell pickup for $1/bag onto your regularly scheduled pickup so we know what to expect.

3

Leave your blue bag next to your bin

It doesn't have to go in your bin! Leave your full and closed blue bag next to your bin and we will swap it out for an empty one.

What items can we take?

We can take clear plastic clamshell packaging made from #1 PET plastic.

Deli containers

Clear plastic only, labels okay

Fruit and berry containers

Clear plastic only, labels okay

Egg cartons

Clear plastic only, labels okay

Salad containers

Clear plastic only, labels okay

Clear takeout containers

Plastic cookie trays

Plastic herb containers

What isn’t in this category?

We can't take any colored or non-PET plastic clamshell containers.

Plastic bottles

These can go in your recycling bin

Blister packaging

Blister packs

Hard semi-flexible packaging around things like batteries and electronics.

Colored plastic

Non-clear containers

#5 hard plastics

#6 hard plastic

Clear plastic clamshells containers.

From grocery stores to farmers' markets, it's hard to avoid these clear plastic clamshells - they’re everywhere! Made from PET, these plastic packages often can't be recycled because they get contaminated either with food or during the single stream the recycling process.

Partnering with Green Impact

We at Ridwell have worked hard to find new solutions for materials that are headed to the landfill. We are proud to be working with Green Impact, the first PET reclaimer solely focused on recycling PET Thermoform packaging in North America, with facilities in the United States and Mexico.

After receiving material at their facility, the Green Impact team breaks open bales to screen for non-thermoform material. Then the material is ground into small flakes and washed, removing contaminants like food residue or labels. The final step is optical sorting. The whole process produces 100% recycled, food-grade plastic ready to be turned into new clamshell containers.

In fact, their biggest buyer of recycled plastic is Driscoll Berry Company!

FAQ

Can I put clamshells in my plastic film bag?

Please keep clamshell containers and plastic film separate! These materials go to different partners and if co-mingled, can lead to contamination.

Why does it cost extra?

The $1/bag fee helps cover our operation costs, such as maintaining our fleet of vehicles, compensating our drivers, and processing the clamshells at our warehouse before they go to our partner.

What if I need more than one clamshell bag?

Just let us know by email help@ridwell.com! We’re happy to drop off additional bags as-needed, or you can use any bag size up to 13 gallons that you have at home.

How clean do the containers need to be?

We ask that all containers be thoroughly rinsed, free of debris and dry before you bag them up for us.

Do labels and stickers need to be removed from the containers?

No, labels and stickers do not need to be removed - we hope this saves time and energy for our members and makes it easier to recycle these with us!

Can you take other hard plastics, or just clamshells?

Items must be clear #1 PET, but we can accommodate any small to medium items as long as this is the case!

Why do the containers need to be clear?

The clamshells need to be clear because our partner cannot extract the dyes from the plastic. Adding other colors into the mix would result in yellowish or discolored sheets of plastic, and there sadly is no end market/ability to make new use of that currently.

Driscolls, Organic Girl, and other companies that use the recycled clamshell containers our partner produces all want clear plastic to display their product.

Where is clear plastic clamshell pickup available?

This pickup is available in our Portland market. As we learn more, we hope to be able to expand it to other markets as well. Thanks!