Don't throw away your plastic bread tags!
A local initiative is collecting this often overlooked piece of plastic waste to be recycled and repurposed.
The Reimagine Plastic project is asking Malaysians to collect these common bits of 'Type 6' plastics because they are usually not accepted by recycling centres.
"A bread tag is a little piece of product, but with billions of them produced annually, all of that plastic is inevitably adding up," they said in a Facebook post.
"So if you have a stash of bread tags in your drawer, don't ditch it. Give it to us!"
The Reimagine Plastic team told SAYS that they have found various ways to upcycle this tiny plastic into household utensils and marketable products
An initiative started by Kuala Lumpur-based social enterprise Hara Makers in 2019, they have been working towards reducing plastic pollution in a bid to save the environment.
Besides bread tags, the organisation also collects plastic straws, plastic bottles, plastic food packaging, and even plastic bags - as long as they are all cleaned and not fragmented.
They also seek to empower the public and various communities to join them in the goal of reducing plastic pollution by holding training workshops for the economically disadvantaged, teaching them to produce the products, and sell them.
As a fairly new initiative, they are also still experimenting and developing new environmentally-safe ways to upcycle the plastic they collect
So far, they have managed to fuse plastic bags and plastic packaging into fabric, which in turn can be made into clothing, bags, card holders, and notebook covers.
Whereas harder plastics can be melted and made into flower pots, coasters, and bowls.
"It may be of low value for some, but what we hope is to reduce plastic waste in landfills," Reimagine Plastic told SAYS.
They sell the items they make to fund their research and operations, as well as to give back to community.
As a volunteer-based initiative, they also hope that the students and people who join them can help lead innovation and explore new possibilities to reduce waste.
"We do love to hear from people about the best practices in dealing with plastic pollution. We learn as we go and find better solutions together."
If you'd like to donate, the team kindly requests that you accumulate at least 1kg worth of plastics before dropping them off
They emphasised that the used plastics have to be cleaned and sorted before sending it to them.
In the name of reducing carbon footprint, they also encouraged interested supporters to look up initiatives in their own neighbourhoods, so that people need not travel far just to recycle their things.
Here are the drop-off points:
1. Here Kepong Baru
Address: 1, Jalan Bangau 1, Kepong Baru, Kuala Lumpur
Time: 12pm onwards (Friday to Sunday)
2. Rumah No.2, Water Warriors Universiti Malaya
Address: Lorong 16/10b, Seksyen 16, 46350 Petaling Jaya
Time: 8am-5pm (Monday to Friday)
For more information, visit the Reimagine Plastics Facebook page.
Last year, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) found that Malaysia is among the worst consumers of plastic packaging in Asia: