Toronto residents hope a new design for a compostable household scrap cart will keep pesky critters out of their trash.
Late this year Rehrig Pacific Co. will start delivering its EnviroGuard roll-out carts to Canada's largest city as it replaces aging Green Bin carts used to take compostable trash to the curb for pickup.
“This cart is new to the market,” said Rehrig Canadian sales manager Dennis Monestier in a phone interview. “It's new to our line of environmental carts.”
EnviroGuard is an injection-molded, high density polyethylene cart built to withstand weather, rough handling and the efforts of raccoons and other scavengers to get at the kitchen scraps and other waste inside the carts. The version chosen by Toronto City Council can hold about 100 liters and weighs about 18 pounds. A slightly larger version is being rolled out for the general market and is making its debut at the Waste Expo Conference in Las Vegas June 1-4.
Rehrig beat out several competitors who tendered proposals for Toronto's contract to replace about a half million Green Bins with the new carts. Toronto agreed to a capital cost of C$27.6 million (US$21.6 million) over 10 years for the carts. Rehrig also will repair and maintain the fleet of new carts in a program worth about C$4 million (US$3.2 million) when city operating costs are included.
Rehrig has been a major supplier of related carts and bins to Toronto, where it already has supplied about 1.5 million containers for trash and recycling curbside pickup. It also has a lot of experience in making and supplying such carts to other major cities in Canada and the United States, which was a factor in Toronto's decision to accept the Rehrig bid. Rehrig, based in Los Angeles, has representatives in Toronto, Montreal and other Canadian and U.S. cities. Other plastics molders that were short-listed for the contract included IPL Inc., Orbis Canada Ltd. and Scepter Canada Inc. Monestier said Rehrig is still pondering where to mold Toronto's carts. The company's manufacturing locations are in Dallas, Los Angeles, Kenosha, Wis., Erie, Pa., Desoto, Kan., Orlando, Fla., Lawrenceville, Ga., and Queretaro, Mexico.
Monestier said Rehrig hired animal behavior experts who understand raccoons' dexterity to help design a patented, gravity-based locking mechanism to keep the mammals and other vermin out of the compostables. The design also makes it simple to automate curbside pickup, an improvement over current Green Bins which are manually unloaded by city employees.