Electroplated Plastics (For example, Electroplated Cutlery) Recyclable?
This question may be a corollary to the "small plastic parts that cannot be recycled" question.
Can electroplated plastics (polystyrene, in particular) such as electroplated silver, gold and rose gold plastic cutlery be recycled?
If it requires special equipment and/or processes, what % of recyclers have such equipment?
There are improving methods for shredding and separating electroplating from plastics, which is used for bathroom fixtures, plastic cutlery, and other applications, but it's not widely available, especially for consumer recyclers. A lot of material -- 30% or more -- is lost in the traditional method of recycling electroplated plastics. Recently introduced methods are so new that few or none of municipal programs will have the equipment.
A specialty plastics recycler may have the tech, but we have not added this to the Earth911 database so we cannot give you a solid estimate of industry adoption.