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“Save Our Styrofoam” Collection Days

Once again, Master Gardeners are sponsoring a community Styrofoam recycling event. The S.O.S. (Save Our Styrofoam) drop-off will be held Saturday, January 16 from 9 AM to 3 PM, and Sunday, January 17 from 10 AM to 3 PM.
The drop off will be held at the end of Microtronics Way just off Camage Avenue in the Tuolumne Road industrial park. Take Tuolumne Road and follow the signs. Waste Management (Cal Sierra Division) is providing the large enclosed containers into which the Styrofoam will be packed. All you have to do is load the material in your car or truck, drive on by, and Master Gardeners will help you unload.
Many holiday gifts-think electronics and wine-come packed in the stuff. Clean white packaging foam (typically used to pack computers, TVs, appliances, furniture, wine) and rigid white foam insulation (typically used around building foundations) is accepted. Remove any tape, stickers, labels, paint or cardboard. We cannot accept bubble wrap, packing peanuts, or used food containers (Pac N Copy, in the Junction Shopping Center, and some other shipping companies will accept your packing peanuts). In order to know if the material is polystyrene expanded foam, look for the #6 in the recyclable triangle label on the bottom of the material.
Please don’t toss this material into the trash – that’s a sure-fire route to the land fill. Once collected, the foam will be baled and transported to Stockton to be recycled. Timbron International in Stockton, an extrusion manufacturing facility, is actively seeking sources of Styrofoam. They are eager to acquire all the polystyrene they can and have agreed to accept all we can gather, because “it’s the right thing to do.” They’re committed to helping recycle polystyrene locally to be used to make extruded moldings for the construction industry. Their products are available for purchase at local home centers, and are both recycled and recyclable. Be a part of this process – let’s make history together.

Joan Bergsund, Tuolumne County Master Gardener, is a member of the S.O.S – Save Our Styrofoam planning committee.