Nearly four years after launching its innovative Dream Machine program, PepsiCo is keeping the dream alive.
In an effort to help raise the recycling rate of beverage containers in the U.S., the company has created a unique program that uses two approaches to encouraging recycling:
• Dream Machine kiosks, which are computerized and interactive recycling machines that resemble a vending machine, but work in reverse. Instead of purchasing bottled drinks from the machine, users deposit bottles in the kiosk and earn reward points for their donations. The points earned from donations can then be redeemed online for discounts on such things as entertainment, dining and travel.
• Dream Machine static bins, which are basically recycling bins that will accept bottles or cans.
The Dream Machines, which were introduced on Earth Day in 2010, have been rolled out across the country at business locations, sports stadiums and supermarkets as well as at schools and college campuses. Its Recycle Rally program is a nationwide school recycling program created to raise awareness about the importance of recycling and to encourage students to make recycling part of their daily lives.
To date, PepsiCo says that more than 1,000 K-12 schools in 34 states have joined the program, keeping an estimated 40 million containers out of landfills. That adds up to almost 2 million pounds of plastic and aluminum that’s been diverted from the trash.
The company says its goal is to raise the recycling rate of plastic beverage containers to 50 percent by 2018. Today, the rate for those containers is about 40 percent.