Thirty-one elephants weigh approximately 290,145 pounds, according to Elephants for Africa. Why is that number relevant? Because that is the approximate weight of units Bausch + Lomb has recycled through its ONE by ONE and Biotrue Eye Care Recycling programs since 2016, the Canadian company announced April 21, a day before Earth Day.
Both programs are made possible by the company’s collaboration with Trenton-based TerraCycle, which specializes in the collection and repurposing of hard-to-recycle post-consumer waste.
Bausch + Lomb, which also has corporate offices in Bridgewater, said that number is the weight of 48,235,850 million recycled units, which includes used contact lenses, eye care and lens care materials.
“For six years we have collaborated with TerraCycle to offer contact lens wearers a free and convenient way to recycle their used contact lenses and packaging materials. Building upon the success of the ONE by ONE program, we created the Biotrue Eye Care Recycling program in 2021, which allows consumers to also recycle their used eye care and lens care materials, such as lens cases and lens solution bottle caps,” Amy Butler, global vice president, Environment, Health, Safety and Sustainability for Bausch Health, said in a statement.
Together, these programs are helping us keep recyclable plastic and aluminum eye health materials out of landfills and oceans so we can help preserve our environment for future generations. — Amy Butler, Bausch Health
The eye care company said contact lenses, eye care and lens care materials don’t typically end up getting processed in standard recycling facilities and are usually sent to landfills.
“Through their two first-of-their-kind recycling programs, Bausch + Lomb is providing consumers with a sustainable way to recycle eye health materials,” added Tom Szaky, TerraCycle’s founder and CEO.
Since 2016, the ONE by ONE program has collected more than 48 million units of used contact lenses, top foils and blister packs. And since its launch in April 2021, the Biotrue program, which is the first and only eye care recycling program in the United States, has collected more than 153,222 eye drop single dose units, lens cases and lens solution caps, as well as lubricant eye drop multi-dose bottles.
The company stated that lens solution bottles can be recycled through standard recycling in accordance with local recycling guidelines."