Company Turns Unsold Goodwill Books into Paper Products

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Goodwill Columbus’ unsold book donations are turned into paper towels, toilet paper, tissue and more through Green Marketing LLC.

Thrift shops have long been the environmentally-savvy serial reader’s choice for stumbling upon a hidden gem, but not every book donated is a sold or even in sellable condition.

Green Marketing LLC decided to bridge the gap between recycling and unused book donations at Goodwill of Columbus, Ohio. Previously, books that could not be sold made their way to the trash, winding up in landfills. The company found a way to turn old, worn out pages into pulp, which can then be turned into consumer goods like paper towels, tissue and toilet paper through sister company

“I found out they were throwing [these books] right into the dumpster because they don’t have a retail value,” Kevin Malinowski, a consultant at Green Marketing told Waste Recycling News. “I suggested that they start stockpiling them at the distribution center and once they got a truckload we could come in and pay them by the ton. That way they weren’t throwing them away … and they were making money.”

The company hopes to collect around 40,000 pounds of unused books a month, which can then be sold anywhere from $15 to $80 a ton, according to the article.