Recycled does not mean Reused – Elemental Recycled Products

Elemental has suspended toilet paper sales. Read more on our blog here.

Recycled does not mean Reused

Elemental launched three weeks ago and I am thrilled with the reaction we’ve received so far. We’ve gotten great coverage from the Nashville area media––News Channel 5, The Tennessean, Today in Nashville (starts at 4:32), Nashville Business Journal––and feedback from our first customers has been very encouraging.

I’ve especially appreciated all of the questions and comments we’ve received by email and social media. We try to answer these as quickly as possible and will incorporate popular questions into the FAQ section of our website. This supports one of the primary goals for Elemental––to education the world about recycling and the benefits of using recycled materials.

One comment we’ve received that I’d like to address today on the blog is the following: “I’m not sure about using used toilet paper.” I wouldn’t want to use used toilet paper either!

Toilet paper made from 100% recycled material does not mean that its made from recycled toilet paper. In fact, the paper that is reprocessed to make our toilet paper generally comes from homes and offices––it is used office paper, newspapers, packaging, etc. We cover our toilet paper–making process in greater depth in the Sustainability section of our website.

After use, you should flush our toilet paper down the pipe just like you would any other toilet paper. Environmentalists push for zero waste products, which is a goal we fully support. The beauty (if that’s the right word to use) of flushing our paper is that it will completely decompose in the septic or sewage system and return its elemental matter back to nature. It’s a very ashes to ashes process. This works especially well with recycled toilet paper because, unfortunately, you cannot infinitely recycle paper. Each recycling process shortens the fiber length of the paper and thus decreases its usability. So, flushing and decomposing is a fitting end for toilet paper.

A problem with non–recycled toilet paper––especially the thickest, fluffiest product generally pushed by major paper producers––is that it has difficulty fully decomposing in a septic or sewage system. Tissue paper, like Kleenex, behaves the same way due to the chemical softeners added to make it so fluffy. This can create major maintenance for septic system owners and landfill waste from sewage systems. Want to know more? We also cover the post–flush process in great depth on our Sustainability page.

Please keep the questions coming!

––Steve Poleskey, Founder of Elemental Recycled Products

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