FEELM Working With Brands to Achieve 100% Recycling of Disposable Vapes
At the Vaper Expo Birmingham on May 13, FEELM, a brand under SMOORE, announced a collaboration with RELX to launch the world's first end-to-end recycling system for disposable products in the United Kingdom. This scheme is a connected cycle involves manufacturers, brand owners, retailers, consumers, and disposal agencies. 2FIRSTS London interviewed Ricky Wang, SMOORE's Overseas PR Manager, about the motivation, key links of the system, and vision of the plan.
Why this scheme
This month, a major plan of the UK government is to be launched with smokers getting free vapes to quit smoking (swap to stop), commissioned by Health Minister Neil O'Brian, who vows a 3 million investment in this plan. Meanwhile, explosive surge of disposable vape use among UK citizens has triggered concern, studies have shown that 1.3 million single-use vapes are thrown away every week – enough to cover 22 football pitches each year, and discarded vapes contain enough lithium batteries to maintain 1,200 electric vehicles.
Ricky explained that FEELM's first industrial end-to-end recycling scheme was designed to address the growing issue of disposable e-cigarette waste in the UK. Disposable e-cigarettes are popular for their convenience, but they are criticized for being non-environmentally friendly. Ricky noted that over 1.3 million disposable e-cigarettes are discarded weekly in the UK, with a 33% annual growth rate. This not only damages the environment but also negatively impacts the entire industry.
Breakdown of the program
FEELM's recycling system seeks to connect brands, courier companies, recycling companies, retailers, and end-users to create a comprehensive recycling system. The collection system is either via mail-in or in-store collection. Users can visit FEELM's recycling page, scan a QR code, and have their disposable e-cigarettes picked up by Royal Mail Group Limited, while in stores, recycling bins are provided for customers to discard their used e-cigarettes.
FEELM also offers incentives to encourage consumer participation in the program. Users can receive a free RELX Magic GO in exchange for 10 disposable e-cigarettes of any brand intended for recycling.
Achieving 100% Recycling
FEELM aims to ensure 100% recycling and zero landfill of e-cigarette related products. Ricky explained that the recycling of vapes is mainly 3 parts, the liquid, the battery, and other components (plastic). The recycling process includes the breakdown and purification of batteries, repurposing of components, and high-temperature incineration of vape juice.
Piloting in London
Pilots will launch in London, including online and in-store recycling services. These services will then gradually expand in the coming six months to other cities such as Birmingham and Manchester.
When asked why the UK was chosen as the first global test site for the project, Ricky cited the explosive growth of the disposable e-cigarette market in the UK made it necessary. He also noted the alignment between the UK government's "Smoke-free 2030" vision and SMOORE's mission, "Atomization makes life better."
FEELM believes that multi-party collaboration is necessary for the success of this project and thanked their partner RELX for their support. Ricky concluded by expressing optimism that with efforts from manufacturers like FEELM and greater resource input, more innovative solutions will emerge, improving the public image of disposable e-cigarettes.
Following RELX, KIWI also announced to collaborate on this recycling scheme. "Joining the FEELM Recycling Scheme aligns with our sustainability goals and supports the UK's smoke-free 2030 target," said Liam Cagliarini, KIWI's UK Country Manager. "This initiative allows us to take social responsibility, engage our customers, and collaborate with distributors to reduce environmental impact. We believe this effort will drive wider industry changes."
Thumbnail source: 2FIRSTS London
*This article is an original article of 2FIRSTS Technology Co., Ltd. The copyright and license rights belong to the company. Any entity or individual shall make link and credit 2FIRSTS when taking actions to copy, reprint or distribute the original article. The company retains the right to pursue its legal responsibility.