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Record Details:

Plastic Loose Fill Council (reuse of packaging materials)

Organization: Recycling Network
Facility Type: Info/Hotline
Status: Open

1298 Cronson Blvd., Ste 201, Crofton, MD 21114
, US 00000



Mission: from the website:

The Plastic Loose Fill Council (PLFC) was founded in 1991 to develop, promote and implement the original use and subsequent recovery, reuse and recycling of polystyrene loose fill, commonly known as "packing peanuts."

The Council operates the Peanut Hotline, the national reuse program for plastic loose fill.

Client/Case Management Information
Contact Name:for general info or to join the network
EMail:join @ loosefillpackaging . com

This organization provides Temporary or Permanent Service? Temporary


Use the online database, or call them to find a place to recycle styrofoam peanuts.

NOTE: it's not a very comprehensive database yet. So if you find local places, please let these guys know.

from the website:

The Plastic Loose Fill Council was founded in 1991 to promote the reuse of polystyrene loose fill, commonly known as "packing peanuts." The Council's Peanut Hotline is one of the country's most successful material reuse programs.

The Council was created by the major US manufacturers of polystyrene loose fill packaging. Members are: Inter-Pac, Inc. of Tupelo, MS; RAPAC, Inc. of Oakland, TN; and Storopack, Inc. of Cincinnati, OH. John D. Mellott, President and General Manager of Storopack, Inc., serves as Council President.

The Council established the

Peanut Hotline



a national, 24-hour consumer hotline and website directory service that provides referrals to the nearest locations that accept loose fill for reuse. Since the Hotline was launched in July of 1991, thousands of individuals have contacted the Hotine each month.

Hotline calls increased dramatically over the first few years as catalog companies promoted the reuse program by printing the toll-free number on informational inserts in each mail-order package. Catalog companies continue to inform their customers of the Peanut Hotline.

In addition to promotion by the Council and catalog companies, the Peanut Hotline's website and toll-free number are listed in numerous recycling guides. Communities recognize the value of the reuse program and publicize it through municipal recycling directories and by word-of-mouth. As near as we can tell, over a million people have used the Hotline Service.

In thousands of cities and towns, local mail and parcel centers, craft and gift shops, camera, hardware and specialty stores accept loose fill from the public for reuse. There are collection centers in every state.

The reuse program offers a benefit to everyone involved. The public is given a convenient way to recycle loose fill. Collection centers report receiving enough loose fill to significantly reduce new packaging purchases and also report receiving new business through increased foot traffic.

Supporting consumer reuse of plastic packing peanuts is one of the ways polystyrene loose fill manufacturers incorporate environmental practices into their industry.

The loose fill industry is a small portion of the U. S. packaging market. Approximately 45 million pounds of loose fill are manufactured each year.

Market research and random collection center surveys give an estimate that 30 percent of the loose fill produced each year is reused. This includes the Plastic Loose Fill Council's Peanut Hotline reuse program and extensive industrial reuse (companies unpack goods and reuse the packaging).

The PLFC Members

INTER-PAC, INC. located in Tupelo, MS, was founded in 1960 as International Commodore. The company was one of the first loose fill packaging manufacturers in America. In 1979, the company began manufacturing EPS resin for its own use and for sale to other loose fill manufacturers. Inter-Pac's products are now used world-wide. In 1982, Inter-Pac was sold to its current owners. In 1991, Inter-Pac began manufacturing EPS resin using recycled plastic. Today recycled polystyrene plays a key role in the company's business. Inter-Pac's 100% recycled plastic resin is one of the company's best selling products. President is Orwill Hawkins.

Contact Information
P.O. Box 2515 (zip code: 38803-2515)
1867 South Veterans Blvd. (zip code: 38804)
Tupelo, MS
phone 662/690-6500

Sales Contact:
sales @ inter-pac . com
phone 800/333-1451
fax 662/690-6501

RAPAC, INC. is located in Oakland, Tenn. and is a privately held firm producing expandable polystyrene for loose fill. The company was started in 1984 and has grown to become the largest loose fill bead producer in the world. The company achieved this growth by being the industry leader in product innovation. Initially, the company introduced a light weight product and in 1990 added recycled content and a photodegradable additive to the entire product line. In early 1991, a product made entirely of recycled materials was introduced. To support their needs for recycled polystyrene, the company operates R-2 Manufacturing, a separate recycling plant in Oakland, TN. All material recycled at R-2 Manufacturing is used by RAPAC. President is Ken Adams.

Contact Information
65 Industrial Park Road
Oakland, TN 38060
phone 800/280-6333

Sales Contact: Ken Adams (x1171)
kena @ rapac . com
or Beverly Traylor (x1166)
phone 800/280-6333
fax 901/465-1181

STOROPACK, INC. headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, was founded in 1978, by Hans Reichenecker, Chairman, and John D. Mellott, President. Storopack, Inc. is a member of the Storopack Reichenecker Group, the world's largest manufacturer, converter and recycler of expandable polystyrene packaging with primary activities that include the manufacture and sale of plastic, starch and paper cushioning materials as well as supportive systems and equipment for the storage and dispensing of these materials. Storopack, Inc. has 22 locations in North America along with 28 licensees. The Storopack Group, in addition to North America, has operations throughout Europe and the Far East.

Contact Information
4758 Devitt Drive
Cincinnati, OH 45246
phone 513/874-0314

Sales Contact: Steve Sobel
steve.sobel @ storopackinc . com
phone 800/827-7225
fax 513/874-4672

How does the Peanut Hotline work?
The Peanut Hotline works this way: by calling 800-828-2214 or going to, individuals learn of the nearest collection site for plastic loosefill packaging. They bring their extra loosefill to a Peanut Hotline member business. That business reuses the loosefill in their outgoing shipments.

What is plastic loosefill?
Plastic loosefill, also known as packing peanuts, is a void-fill packaging product made of expanded polystyrene. It is over 99.6% air. It consists of small pieces of sturdy protective packaging that is used to fill in the empty space between merchandise and exterior cartons.

What about other plastic packaging?

* For questions about large pieces of expanded polystyrene packaging, call Alliance of Foam Packaging Recyclers at 415-451-8340. They know about the type of plastic packaging that is in molded shapes that fits around large pieces of equipment or computers, DVDs, etc.
* For all of your questions about other plastic packaging products, click on the American Chemistry Council.

Where can I buy plastic loosefill?
You can buy plastic loosefill from packaging manufacturers and distributors across the country. To find one near you, look under Packaging Supplies in the Yellow Pages or contact one of the PLFC Members.

Peanut Hotline membership benefits?
As a collection center member of the Peanut Hotline you receive free loosefill packaging, potential new walk-in customers, recognition as a local community service provider, a great public relations story to tell your local media and 24-hour phone advertising of your business to local callers. To learn more, click on Peanut Hotline.

How can I join the Peanut Hotline?
You can join the Peanut Hotline by printing out the membership form provided on this website and sending it in with your check for your dues payment. You can pay for one year at $30 or two years at $50. There is a discount for enrolling more than one store.

Update my Peanut Hotline listing?
You can update your membership listing by mailing changes to your listing to:

Plastic Loose Fill Council/AFPR
1298 Cronson Blvd., Ste 201,
Crofton, MD 21114

Order more membership supplies?
You can order more membership supplies by sending us your request, with your name and address to:
Plastic Loose Fill Council/AFPR
1298 Cronson Blvd., Ste 201,
Crofton, MD 21114

Or you can download copies (pdf files) of

1. brochure ("Plastic Foam Loose Fill and the Environment")
2. package insert template
3. sample Media Release for Collection Centers
4. Working With The Local Media

If you want our brochure "Plastic Foam Loose fill and the Environment," email your request to literature @ loosefillpackaging . com. Please include your name and address in the email, so we know where to send it.

If you want a Peanut Hotline membership application, email your request to join @ loosefillpackaging . com. Please remember to include your name and address in the email. You can also print out a membership application form from this website."

Find a Peanut Hotline collection site?
To find your nearest Peanut Hotline collection site, click on Drop-off Sites. If the nearest Peanut Hotline site is too far from you, look up a packaging store business in your yellow pages and ask them if they would like your plastic loosefill. You can also ask a local craft shop if they can use your extra loosefill.

How do I use plastic loosefill?
To pack with pastic loosefill, first dispense a layer of loosefill in the bottom of the carton. Heavier articles need more loosefill. Place the article that you are sending in the center of the carton on the bed of loosefill. Pour loosefill into the space around the sides of the article so there's a minimum of four inches of loosefill between the article and the side of the carton. Overfill the carton with more loosefill so it forms a small mound above the top edge of the box. Do not remove excess loosefill. Close the box firmly. This will interlock the loosefill and hold your article in place during shipment.

Plastic loosefill and the environment?
The minimum recycled content in plastic loosefill is 25%. Some loosefill has 100% recycled content. Through the national reuse program for plastic loosefill, the Peanut Hotline, member businesses, on average, use 50% reused loosefill in their outbound shipments. Over 30% of all plastic loosefill is reused. Plastic loosefill is an expanded polystyrene product made up of 99.6% air. Because of its light weight and sturdy nature, it provides excellent protection for fragile shipments and adds little to shipping weight. For more information click on Environmental Questions.

What is the history of EPS loose fill?
EPS loose fill was invented in the years following World War II when advances in plastics technology met the demand for cleaner and lighter weight substitutes for the household or barnyard packaging materials that soldiers used to ship home their valuables. On receipt, packages stuffed with popcorn, paper and rubberized horse hair void-fills often arrived with vermin, debris and broken pieces of the valuables they were meant to protect. Contaminated boxes and the introduction of foreign born pests led to the military and postal services banning food-based packaging materials.

As America prospered in the fifties, businesses and consumers ordered more products by mail. Packaging technology evolved to meet America's rapidly growing shipping needs. One of these developments was EPS loose fill. Its light weight and strong cushioning abilities literally filled the void between the product and the package exterior walls.

The first EPS loose fill manufacturer was Dow Chemical. Styrene resin was an available by-product of the petrochemical industry. Dow engineers and chemists discovered that, when injected with a gas, styrene plastic maintained its strength in a softer, lighter form, making it ideal as a package cushioning product. Dow's original technology injected chloroforocarbon or CFC gas into styrene plastic rods, resulting in pencil-thick, light-weight and flexible ropes that simulated and improved on rubberized horsehair packaging.

Over time, the rod shape evolved into S, C, H and 7 shapes that flowed easily into boxes from overhead packaging feeder systems.

With environmental concerns came developments such as cleaner blowing agent substitutes for CFCs, the recycling of gasses in the manufacturing process, the recycling of styrene resin in the production of loose fill, the remanufacturing of EPS loose fill into new products and a consumer reuse program for EPS loose fill in the United States.

Today, EPS loose fill is manufactured and used worldwide. It is produced regionally by plastics packaging companies using recycled polystyrene and styrene by-products purchased from petrochemical companies. In its finished form, EPS loose fill is 99.6% air, up to 100% recycled plastic content, easily reused and exceptionally protective as a cushioning package material.

Info Source/Changes:

Created At: Wed Jun 01 16:28:37 +0000 2011
Updated At: Wed Jun 01 16:41:41 +0000 2011
Updated By: tfri

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