Local recyclers seek countywide support for recycling program ‘Recyclops’

Published 7:59 am Saturday, September 14, 2019

By Krista Salter

The Orange Leader


Trash cans in Orange County have been a little fuller lately, but for $10 a month per household, recycling bins across the county may be filling up, and emptying regularly, again soon.

After Orange County lost its recycling services in August, members from local group Keep Orange County Beautiful went searching for solutions, finding Utah-based recycling company, Recyclops, online. 

On a mission to bring recycling back to Orange, representatives from Keep Orange County Beautiful will address the Commissioners Court Oct. 2 to present their idea on how to continue to clean up the county.

 “Since we lost recycling in Orange, it’s been killing me to throw all my recyclables away,” Sandra Hoke, of Keep Orange County Beautiful, said. Her friend recently led her to a website for a recycling company that “looked promising.” 

For rural places like Orange County that experience greater difficulty with community recycling, Ryan Smith, a Brigham Young University graduate, founded Recyclops.

“We contacted (Smith) by phone, and he said they specialize in small communities who aren’t big enough to keep a large recycling deal going,” Hoke said. “He was interested in coming here.”

The company has seen success in rural parts of Utah, Idaho, Arizona and the Dallas area of Texas since Smith, also the CEO, founded it in 2013.

Based on the idea that recycling should be easy and convenient, Recyclops operates on a two-step platform: place all unsorted recyclables in designated bags, and then put the bags curbside on pick-up days. 

Recyclops will pick up unlimited plastic bags of unsorted recyclables placed curbside twice per month. Account-holders can also schedule pick-ups at other times, and commercial accounts can be made available with slightly modified requirements. Payments are made completely online.

The company offers its own plastic bags for $10 a box for approximately 160 bags, making identification of the recyclable bags easier.

The company utilizes local drivers and small trucks to pick up recyclables and store them in a container in one central location until its full, and then the container is taken to a sorting facility.

Recyclops picks up all paper, plastic, cardboard and metal recyclables, but does not accept glass, Styrofoam, motor oil, insecticides, hazardous chemical containers, plastic bags or tarps.

Hoke said an added advantage of bringing a recycling program back to the county is keeping the landfill used in Newton from filling up too quickly, therefore keeping it open longer.

Known as the “Trashy Ladies,” Sandra Hoke, Sandra Cash, and Deborah Bednar plan to present their idea about bringing Recyclops to Orange County Commissioners Court at their Oct. 2 meeting.

There, they’ll ask the commissioners to consider exploring the requirements and what it would take to start doing business. Smith plans to visit Orange County to attend the meeting and speak about Recyclops.

In order to implement recycling services through Recyclops, a required 300 households through Orange County need to pre-sign up. Hoke said last time she spoke with Smith, word had spread like wildfire, and 82 households had already signed up.

As an added incentive, the county commissioner told Hoke that the city would provide a box of Recyclops plastic collection bags to the first 100 households that sign up.

To pre-sign up visit Recyclops.com/Orange.

To the members of Keep Orange County Beautiful, Recyclops is the ideal fit for the county because they partner with others in the community when they bring their business there, and have already been in touch with the Shangri La Garden and Nature Center.

Recyclops and the local organizations behind it plan to distribute handouts at the upcoming Scarecrow Festival at Shangri La Botanical Gardens — fitting since recyclables are used to create the scarecrows.

Hoke said so far the Commissioners Court seems receptive and excited about the idea of bringing Recyclops to the county.

Nov. 15 is known nationally as America Recycles Day, and Hoke thinks “it would be great if we could get this in place by then.”