Recycling Programs

We offer a wide variety of recycling solutions for our customers, including ink and toner, electronics and rechargeable batteries. Our efforts haven’t gone unrecognized; Staples has been honored by the National Recycling Coalition with their Recycling Works Award for our recycling practices.

Across our U.S. business in 2010, we recycled:

  • 33,278 tons of corrugated cardboard
  • 2,725 tons of mixed paper
  • 637 tons of shrink wrap

In 2010, we also collected more than 10 million pounds of office technology waste and more than 60 million used ink and toner cartridges from customers in the U.S. for recycling.

Ink & Toner Recycling

Ink & Toner Recycling

Staples is one of the world's largest ink recyclers, having recycled more than 110 million ink and toner cartridges over the last 2 years. We're committed to the highest level of sustainability by recycling or reusing 100% of a cartridge's components - the plastics in many end-of-life cartridges are reused to make other products, including items like office trays, pen and paper holders, and even Sustainable Earth by Staples™ calculator casings.

Through our driver pick-up program, we make it easy to recycle your empty ink and toner cartridges. We provide pallet pick-up programs for large returns and prepaid mailing labels for customers without driver service - and we will recycle any brand of ink and toner. Here’s the best part: it’s all provided free of charge so that doing the right thing is even easier.

Use our mailing label to send us your empty ink and toner cartridges for recycling, free of charge.

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Cartridges that cannot be reused are recycled to create new products. The process is as follows:

1. Spent cartridges are collected for recycling
2. Carriers deliver used cartridges to collection center
3. Cartridges evaluated for recycling or reusing
4. Cartridges are recycled to extract components and raw material to be used in manufacturing new products or are sorted through ISO 9001 inspection process, remanufactured, tested and packaged for reuse.

Technology Recycling Services

Technology Recycling Services

Staples was one of the first national retailers to offer an in-store technology recycling program. Since 2007, Staples has collected more than 26 million pounds of old office technology equipment for responsible recycling. This program has helped maximize recovery and reuse of office technology products, parts and raw materials while ensuring that hazardous components like lead and mercury are properly managed.

Staples works with recycling vendors that are pursuing or have earned certification to either the EPA Responsible Recycling standard or the E-Stewards Recyclers Program standard. Both of these standards seek to ensure that facilities responsibly handle and recycle e-waste. Vendors working with Staples have also certified their facilities to the ISO 14001 environmental management standard.

In addition to desktop office technology, Staples has recycled thousands of mobile phones over the past five years through our partnerships with FlipSwap and Call2Recycle, both of which recycle and refurbish mobile electronics. Call2Recycle partners with Staples in our collection of rechargeable batteries and also offers free rechargeable battery recycling programs for various organizations.

Copy & Print Services

Copy & Print Services

Since March 2008, Staples® Copy & Print Centers have used 50% post-consumer recycled Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified paper as the standard offering for high-speed black and white copying. In fact, 49% of all copies in the United States in 2009 were made on FSC certified paper and 39% of copies were made on paper containing post-consumer recycled fibers.