That shredded paper that your company produces has plenty of life left in it, so don't just toss it in the trash.
No matter what size of business you run or work for, it’s inevitable you will receive lots of mail. Some of it will probably be sensitive. It may contain information that you would be uncomfortable if anyone got their hands on it, thus you will have to get rid of it. Nowadays this involves you or the mail department shredding everything into millions of pieces. Once it’s done you are left with huge piles of shredded paper everywhere. Instead of tossing it or putting it in the recycle bin there are other things you can do.
The easiest option would be to turn a blind eye and throw it in the trash. You’re busy so let someone else deal with it or you’ll do the green thing next time. That’s how we got into this mess and you should be trying your best to help out the environment for future generations. Recycling is the next best thing and you can simply use it again. There’s plenty of useful things you can do with that shredded paper. Let all that unwanted mail work to your advantage. Here’s a few tips on what you can do with the shredded paper to help your business go green.
If you ship packages to your customers or clients you could easily stuff the shredded paper inside the boxes to stop valuable items from getting damaged. While keeping mountains of shredded paper is probably a concern, you can save money on purchasing packing materials, such as those styrofoam peanuts that are not bio-degradable. If you only send out a tiny amount of that shredded paper to the customer each time you will have a nearly limitless supply. The customers or clients won’t care, they’ll just throw it in the recycle bin for you. It’s more likely they will be happy you have taken the time to ensure their package doesn’t get delivered in a thousand pieces. Once you start putting this inside all your bigger packages you will get rid of it in no time.
There are likely numerous pet stores near you and they may have plenty of rodents inside. That means they will need huge amounts of shredded paper for bedding. Cut your disposal costs by giving them all the shredded paper, you might find they are happy to take it off your hands. There could even some of your employees who would love to take some home for their pets. At least it would save them from buying it every week when they tidy out their pet’s cages. Tell them it’s a bonus.
You’re probably wondering why on earth it matters whether or not your employees have children. Well they love nothing more than to play with anything imaginable and shredded paper is no different. There’s all sorts of things they can make with it, so it’s great for any of them if they have school projects. It will make the parents happy because all the arguing over who gets to play with the Xbox stops. If the kids are a little younger they might also like to roll around in it, heck you may even want to do that. You might find you can get rid of empty boxes at the same time.
If you live in the north, some of your co-workers might use log fires during the winter. It’s always easier to use shredded paper to start them. It will save the hassle of looking around the house for magazines to rip to pieces. If they use their fire quite a lot, they might take large amounts of the paper home. All you need to do is let them know it is available for free. Just remember to give them something to take it home in, such as an old box, because they won’t want to find shredded paper stuck in the seat of their car in a few years time.
You can use shredded paper for compost heaps and it’s getting recycled straight back into where it came from. If you or the employees don’t need it yourselves, you can always ask a gardening center if they’d like to take it off your hands. They would be able to get rid of it much easier than you and you would be helping the environment at the same time. It’s better than just throwing it out.
Daniel Acton is a professional green blogger and specializes in blogging about environmentally-friendly office planning, cutting down paper use and franking machine usage. You can follow his amazing articles about green on twitter: @dannyacton