One family's mission to recycle crisp packets on the Fylde

Seven-year-old Alex and his mum Kirstin Hitchins opened their St Anne's home as a Terracycle drop-off point for this common waste item that can't be easily recycled

By Lucinda Herbert
Thursday, 30th December 2021, 12:30 pm

When Seven-year-old Alex started at Clifton Primary in 2019, he was keen to help the environment. But he soon noticed one common item that wasn’t getting recycled.

Crisp packets littered the school, but they were going to landfill. So mum, Kirstin Hitchins, stepped up.

“The rubbish left at the entrance to his nursery upset Alex. He was aware of littering and how we recycled some stuff but not everything. I realised we were going to have to be the change.”

Seven-year-old Alex stood by three boxes of used crisp packets to be recycled through the Terracycle scheme

So Kirstin opened her home address, 166 Curzon Road, St Annes, as a public recycling point for the foil-lined wrappers.

They cannot be easily recycled by the council, but she found a national scheme to get involved with.

Terracycle has solutions for hard-to-recycle waste products, including water filters, contact lenses, pens, and old cosmetics. Anyone can register their home or business address to become a collection point.

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“So now our home address is listed on the Terracycle website as an official collection point. It’s public, so anyone can drop off their crisp packets. Each month I package them all up and Tetracycle collect them to be recycled.

“Monthly I send off the maximum amount of 3 boxes which is about 26kg."

The empty crisp packets do not need to be cleaned but should not be folded into triangles. The outer packaging for multi packs can also be recycled, but popcorn or sweet wrappers can't.

Kirstin also helps a local eco-shop, Green and Me, which operates a refilling service for customers.