Just Born goes landfill free through energy-to-waste method

By Oliver Nieburg contact

- Last updated on GMT

Just Born are the makers of Peeps, Hot Tamales and Mike and Ike.
Just Born are the makers of Peeps, Hot Tamales and Mike and Ike.

Related tags: Recycling

US confectioner Just Born is reusing or recycling all waste at its headquarters and main production plant after finding a solution to convert a portion of previously unrecyclable waste into energy.

The company had reached a point where it recycled 92% of its waste, but 8% was still going to landfill.

Now the unrecyclable portion, which is mainly comprised of paper materials such as towels and plates from its cafeteria, will be compacted by Sustainable Waste Solutions (SWS) and taken to a Covanta Energy-from-Waste (EfW) facility to be converted into energy.

Just Born manufactures confectionery brands including Peeps, Hot Tamales and Mike and Ike.

On-site compactor: ‘pays for itself’

SWS installed a self-contained compactor at Just Born’s Bethlehem, Pennsylvania factory in March.

A Just Born spokesperson said the compactor had a 12x40m footprint and was outside the building, but attached to its plant.

“This equipment should pay for itself in one and half years,”​ said the spokesperson. They added that the compactor was completely sealed, vented with produced no leakages.

Operation and energy conversion

A Just Born employee inputs the waste into the compactor guided by monitoring mechanisms.

After it is compacted, it is collected by SWS and taken to a Covanta EfW facility. To learn more about how these facilities work, see here​.

Just Born does not benefit from the energy, but the energy goes into the grid supplying 30,000 homes.

The firm has been certified been certified by SWS as a Landfill Free enterprise.

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