Recycling idea

For the first time ever, I’m low on packing peanuts for shipping; I have always saved and re-used the peanuts that come in my boxes of incoming ingredient and supply orders, so I’ve never had to buy any before. I like to keep these in use and hope the people who receive them re-use them too. I’ve been saving these for years, but I’ve been using them at a faster rate in recent years, partly because I had to switch to larger shipping boxes for the new boxes/bottles. I hate to buy new peanuts, even the new biodegradable type. I’ll look into various options, but it’s tough to keep shipping prices reasonable when postage and packing costs keep increasing.

I had an idea that might be fun for local customers, would help me, and would be good for the environment. I’m wondering if any locals might want to save their packing peanuts the way I do in big trash bags and then stop by and trade them in for free samples. Maybe four samples per big bag of peanuts or something like that. They could sniff the tester bottles while here too, to make the jaunt worthwhile. (The peanuts would have to be scent-free, but could be any color or type.) Just a thought I’ll consider. Meantime, I’ll check into the options for various packing materials…

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  1. What a great idea. I have two enormous black bags of peanuts and bubble wrap in the basement. Unfortunately, I’m in Vermont and so very, very far from you and your lovely mild climate. (It’s dropping to -24 here tonight with a high of -4 during the day tomorrow. I’m dousing myself in Pure Incense, which has a warming effect emotionally for me. Good luck with the peanuts.

  2. I wish there was some way for me to recycle my shredded paper through a packing exchange. I have a bin of it upstairs. We’re allowed to put it into the compost, but it just seems odd to me to do that, given how compost is supposed to be organic and I know that lots of our receipts are coated in an incredibly thin plastic.

  3. Great idea! I hope people take you up on it.

    As for packing materials, one company I ordered from actually used popcorn. The non-sugared, non-buttered type of course! 🙂 It worked pretty well, but I don’t know what it costs. And there’s the hassle of popping it (I imagine it’s a rodent hazard to keep a lot of it around ready=popped).

    1. I’ve heard of real popcorn too. Don’t think I could do it, but it’s a cute idea. I like the shredded paper idea, though I don’t generate much myself.

  4. Like Martha above, I have a huge stash of packing peanuts in the basement but am not close enough to do a darn thing about it. I’d love to find a place locally to take mine (especially in exchange for samples) so am betting you’ll find someone there.

    Quite cool here this weekend so liberally sprayed myself with some Femme Jolie. My new backup bottle offers a sense of liberation!

      1. There are a couple of places not too far from me. My husband will be thrilled when this box disappears so tanks for posting the link.

  5. I’ll probably be able to drop some packing peanuts in a month (I plan to be in your area around Feb.18 – 19). I’ll contact you closer to the date. I do not need anything in return (well, maybe an opportunity to buy something on the spot and save on S&H), I just hate to see those going to waste.

      1. There, you see, Laurie? Already one volunteer!
        Wish you were closer as well and I could bring over peanuts and bubble wraps and the monster bubble stuffers from the likes of William Sonoma and other big item suppliers.
        Hope you get some local takers!


  6. I use a local company (Space Pak) here in Portland that sells bags of recycled peanuts at about half the price of the new ones. Not that it does you any good, but maybe somewhere local to you does the same.

  7. Popping in to add my two cents:

    1¢: My local UPS store accepts used peanuts. A lot of storefront shipping stores will. Worth a try for those who can’t share locally with Laurie.

    2¢: When I was in my eBay heyday–which is to say, purchased on a regular basis–I thought to ask a couple of the local sellers if they wanted shipping materials. One said YES, and was quite grateful. For a while, I shared boxes and packing materials, until I kicked…well, curbed…my habit.

    It’s nice to think of “shipping” and “SSS” in the same action. 🙂

    1. Hi Olga! That’s sweet of you, thanks so much, but it’s probably not worth mailing them since postage gets high for bulky items like that. I’ve had a couple responses to my Craig’s list post so I’m keeping up for now! Thanks though!

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