The reverse vending machine isn’t a new idea. Different machines have sprouted up across the country in recent years that take in recyclables – some in exchange for cash, others swap and trade for new items.
The Swap-O-Matic wants to expand the idea, though, in the form of five new machines – the location of which will be decided by supporters. To do that, Lina Fenequito, designer and creator of the machine, needs a little help from the general public.
A new Kickstarter campaign was started to get funding off the ground. Currently, the team has raised just over $11,000 of their lofty $135,000 goal with around two weeks to go. As with all Kickstarter campaigns, this project won’t be funded unless the team reaches its goal.
Fenequito and company have a few incentives to sweeten the donating deal. Depending on the value of a donation, rewards range from recognition as a donor on their website to getting one’s own Swap-O-Matic machine.
“On a much larger scale, the ultimate goal is for the Swap-O-Matic to inspire a movement, affecting change for large numbers of people and communities as trading and reusing re-emerges as a means for increasing local sustainability, reducing waste, and reigning in overconsumption,” Fenequito writes on the Kickstarter page.
Currently, there is only one Swap-O-Matic machine – housed at Ample Hills Creamery, a ice cream shop in Brooklyn, New York.
The Kickstarter campaign is about more than funding machines. Donations will also be put toward research and development of new machine features and funding a new web and mobile website.