While it’s easy to chuck stuff out — there are actually creative alternatives that businesses can get up on that will help promote waste management and avoid a sad fate in a landfill.

In some cases, you can even make money by boycotting the trash can.

Though it’s slightly more effort, there are little things businesses can do to help meet those sweet green initiatives they’ve set for themselves — after all, the little things always add up. Plus, recycling makes you better looking (and by this we mean sporting green is a good look on any company.)

For folks in the food service industry

Get your employees to start saving all those wine corks because they can live on even after the wine service ritual is complete. Not only can you hoard them, you can actually make some cash off of them. Want to learn more? The Penny Hoarder will tell you all about it.

An alternative that won’t make you any extra dollars but will still recycle corks is recork.org. reCORK repurposes those wonderful little things into things like soles for your shoes — you too can help a sole out.

For those who work in accommodations

Hotel chains are all about this awesome trend: joining forces with nonprofit organizations — recycling leftover soap and shampoo — and donating it to the needy. There are organizations like Clean the World that folks in the hospitality industry can partner up with!

Yes, folks. There is hope with leftover soap.

For those in retail

In our recent Success Story, we recognized retailer lululemon for their sustainability efforts and waste management program. They came up with a creative “We Love Luon” challenge for their staff — producing brilliant ideas like taking their scrap material (lululemon’s signature Luon fabric) and created ‘sustainable styles’ in product lines. They donate their excess materials to art groups and schools, according to Metro Vancouver.

In the shoe business? Consider stepping up the awesome and collecting customers’ old Nike sneakers so you can do the Nike Reuse-a-Shoe program. Since it’s debut in 1990, this program has managed to collect over 25,000,000 shoes and used them for things like sustainable sports arenas.

For anyone who uses filtered water

First of all, good for you for boycotting the bottle! Second, there is a way to give new life to your Brita filters. For directions on how you can do this, whether you’re in the US or Canada, click here for more information.

Where there’s a will, there’s a way to recycle!


Image credit: hey mr glen