Recycling the plastic polluter in your bathroom

Archie and Edith from Menzies Creek Primary School are ready to recycle. Picture: ROB CAREW

By Derek Schlennstedt

Think plastic bags are bad for the ocean? There’s an equally bad offender in your bathroom.

Australia throws away an estimated 30 million toothbrushes every year and the 1000 tonnes of rubbish generated by those brushes are now being targeted by schools around Victoria – specifically Menzies Creek Primary School.

As part of a nationwide initiative, the school has taken up the challenge to reduce the amount of oral care products that go into landfill.

Since June, students at Menzies Creek Primary have been busy collecting oral care waste items to recycle for the Colgate Community Garden Challenge.

Tania McGregor, Garden specialist at Menzies Creek Primary said the products collected by the school are sorted into 2kg packages.The packages are then sent to TerraCycle, which creates new products from the waste.So far, the school has accumulated almost two of the 2kg packages.

“Its oral care products, toothbrushes, empty toothpaste tubes, packaging and floss containers – all those items that are normally thrown in to the bin,” said Ms McGregor.

Ms McGregor invited locals to drop-off any oral care products they might have.

“We’ve just got a box in the office and junior building and got a poster on the front, so anyone can just drop their stuff in the box.”

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