Thursday, September 4, 2014

Charlotteans toss out 40 million bathroom tissue tubes yearly

We're pretty disciplined about recycling at my house, but now I realize we've ignored one item. The cardboard tube inside each roll of bathroom tissue gets tossed every time.
That happens in a lot of homes – more than 40 million tubes get tossed every year, according to one estimate. That's just in Charlotte.
The national toll is more than 17 billion tubes yearly, with more than 150 tubes per household being thrown out on average. Imagine the amount of waste we’ve created over 100 years, which is how long the tubes have been around, according to a rep for Scott-brand products, which is now making tubeless rolls.
Yes, that’s how we’ve come by all of this information. The data arrived at my desk with samples of the tubeless swirls. (The centers aren’t open as much as in the picture above.)
It will take time to find out whether consumers see these as an acceptable alternative to what they’re buying now, but it’s a start. The tissue is not made from recycled material, which could make it less appealing in some households. Comments on the Scott website are mixed and it sounds like the paper hangs awkwardly when you reach the end of the roll.
Prices might be a factor. A four-pack of Scott Naturals Tube-Free sells for $2.97 at Walmart stores, according to the rep. She offered a comparison price that was less exacting: $3.40 “average retail price” for Scott Extra Soft, a premium product. Store location unknown.

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