Plastic recycling — really all recycling for that matter — is increasing through a national program for Toyota Motor Corp.'s North American spare parts business.
The effort includes the company's largest parts centers in Ontario, Calif., and Hebron, Ky., as well as regional parts distribution centers in Cincinnati, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Portland, Ore.
The goal is to eventually expand the effort throughout the company's other parts distribution centers over the next couple of years.
Toyota is using Boles Parts Supply Inc. as a contractor for its recycling, including parts and packaging, through the company's National Scrap Program. Boles provides a single vendor source to take all of the recyclables from the six current sites in a single-stream format, according to Toyota.
That means Toyota workers can simply intermingle all of the recyclables without worrying about separating them on site, freeing up more time to do their parts distribution work.
“Toyota is very protective of our product and our quality. And scrap, we were handling that to ensure that defective products don't get out in the marketplace somehow,” said Juliana Dee, manager of the recycling program at Toyota's North American Parts Operation.
But that had become difficult with dozens of vendors around the country handling a variety of materials at the different parts distribution locations, she explained. “Each location basically had their own process, so it wasn't very standardized. We saw some challenges. We definitely saw some opportunities to improve.”