Recycling reward program proves popular

Published 11:40 pm Tuesday, June 10, 2014

800,000 points so far

After about three years of operation, a program that rewards Suffolk residents for recycling says it is getting good participation from the city.

“Participation has been great,” said Bill Dempsey, president of Recycling Perks. “Over 30 percent of the eligible households have signed up for our program.”

The program gives recyclers 50 points each time they put their blue can to the curb on recycling day. They can then sign on to the Recycling Perks website and redeem their points for offers from local businesses or give their points to charity.


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“That is the goal, to drive traffic to local businesses and save people money to recycle,” Dempsey said.

Recycling Perks’ parent company is TFC Recycling, which provides the Suffolk recycling pickups.

Offers in Suffolk currently include deals at the Main Street Chick-fil-A, the Hilton Garden Inn, Sapporo Japanese Steakhouse, Sleepy Hole Golf Course, Bike West, Bon Vivant, Taylor’s Do-it Center and more.

Rewards often include free or buy-one-get-one products and services.

Charities in Suffolk that have benefited from points donations include Friends of the Library, Impact Suffolk and the Nansemond River Preservation Alliance. Points donations go toward a threshold that triggers a $1,000 donation to the charity from Recycling Perks.

“We’ve got a great redemption rate,” Dempsey said, noting that about 60 percent of the households that have signed up have redeemed some of their points. More than 800,000 points have been redeemed in the last three years, he added.

The company plans to upgrade its website soon to offer a high-demand service — mobile rewards.

“That will help if you’re out and about and want to redeem a reward quickly or if you don’t have a printer,” said Amelia Baker, vice president of operations for Recycling Perks.

Dempsey said the company’s website mobile visits have gone from almost none a year and a half ago to more than 80 percent of its visits.

He encouraged businesses and charities that want to participate to email for more information. It’s completely free, he added.

“The proof is in the numbers,” he said.

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