Kindie first in country to collect toothbrushes and tubes for recycling

TerraCycle recycling Colgate Oral Care Brigade toothpaste tubes toothbrushes Include New Zealand Anna Minns floss containers
Waikanae Kindergarten kids are sorting used toothbrushes and toothpaste tubes for recycling as the kindie pioneers a national programme to stop the items going to the tip. The Kapiti Coast kindie has registered as one of the first public collection points for TerraCycle and Colgate's oral care recycling programme, and is the first educational institution to become involved. Toothbrushes, toothpaste tubes and floss containers are turned into pellets and recycled into plastic products such as park benches, watering cans and waste bins. Kindy pupil George Bidwell, 4, said he was excited to be involved after dropping off items for recycling, and being sent back a pencil and pencil case made from  them. "We are making lots of things from lots of stuff. Making space at the dump," he said. Kindergarten spokeswoman Pettina Meads said they were delighted to be one of the first communities to have a dropoff point for the used items. "Everyone goes through these items and, by bringing them to us, they will be put to good use." The kindie earns two cents for each item sent for recycling, and the money raised will be used to fund new display cabinets so children can easily access their own resources. TerraCycle general manager Anna Minns said the company was keen for schools and sports clubs to join the programme. "It is estimated that nine million toothbrushes and 16m toothpaste tubes are used in New Zealand each year. The programme is part of a big community effort to recycle waste that would otherwise end up in your landfill," she said. "The aim is for whole communities in New Zealand, like Waikanae, to collect together via a nationwide network of dropoff locations." Used items, excluding electric toothbrushes, can be dropped off at Waikanae Kindergarten between 8am and 5pm.