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DCW launches vape recycling service to tackle growing e-cig waste problem

Leading South West independent waste management firm DCW has launched a new disposable vape recycling service in a bid to divert potentially hazardous waste away from landfill.

Expanding its existing Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) recycling service, DCW can now provide businesses with a 23 litre caddy so that disposable vape users can recycle the casing and batteries of vapes responsibly.

In the UK, 1.3 million disposable vapes are thrown into general waste every week, enough to cover 22 football pitches every year. WEEE is the fastest growing waste stream in the UK and with the number of vape users growing, Exeter-based DCW is keen to divert the materials away from landfill.

Businesses who wish to recycle disposable vapes with DCW will receive one caddy which will include vermiculite to collect the lithium-ion batteries and the vape itself safely.

DCW will then collect the caddy and the disposable vapes for forward processing.

E-cigarettes are potentially hazardous to the environment due to the presence of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and need to be recycled responsibly. Plastic that may contain POPs will be sent to DCW partners to be incinerated. The ash produced from this process will then be used in the building industry, ensuring that nothing ends up in landfill.

Many of DCW’s existing customers have already signed up to the disposable vape recycling scheme including My Vape in Newton Abbot and the Guildhall Shopping Centre in Exeter.

Chris at My Vape commented: “Product waste in the vaping industry has always been a slight issue but we have now entered the era of the disposable vape, the single most environmentally damaging part of the industry. With seven individually recyclable components in one small, convenient and compact package, we recognised the potential disposable vapes could have, hence the scheme we now participate in with DCW. The recycling experts help break these products down and reduce the environmental damages as much as possible from our end. I would strongly encourage other vape stores to take the same approach.”

Family-run DCW has continued to expand its WEEE recycling service in recent months after e-waste has been identified as the fastest growing waste stream in the world. In September, it acquired Plymouth-based electrical collection and recycling company Collectrical, growing its client base across Devon and Cornwall. DCW also identifies appliances which are repairable and sends them to partners in Plymouth who repair equipment such as washing machines and fridges. DCW buys these items back and donates them to people who really need them.

Simon Almond, Managing Director of DCW, commented: “We’re delighted to announce the launch of DCW’s new disposable vape recycling service. Many don’t realise that these single-use vapes can actually be recycled and it’s important that the materials are recovered as they can be dangerous to the environment if they end up in landfill. At DCW, we realise the importance of recovering WEEE. The materials found in electrical waste are incredibly valuable but unfortunately, not enough is being done on a global scale to recycle electronic items. By extending our WEEE recycling service to include disposable vapes, we hope to make a difference here in the South West.”

Simon continued: “Disposable vapes are worth recycling as they provide us with two valuable materials. Not only can we recover the wire and lithium batteries, we can also recycle the plastic casing too. The material that doesn’t contain POPs can go into the making of our recycled furniture range, creating a true circular economy in the South West. I encourage all businesses to think about adopting a disposable vape recycling solution to ensure that these materials do not end up in landfill.”

DCW empties in excess of 10,000 containers every week, diverting more than 40,000 tonnes away from landfill each year. It was the first company in the South West to offer a Zero to Landfill solution, meaning that all materials that can be recycled, are. DCW’s Zero to Landfill solution helps support the waste management and recycling industry by providing materials for onward processing, recycling and manufacturing.

As well as its Zero to Landfill service for mixed commercial waste, DCW also provides specialist waste management services such as chemical and WEEE disposal and site clearances.

For more information about DCW’s services, call 01392 361300 or email

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