‘Ridwell’ Recycling Program Launches in Twin Cities, Collecting Hard-to-Dispose Items – WCCO

Originally published April 1, 2022

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – If you’re spring cleaning, you may have come across items that require several different trips to get rid of. A new program recently launched in the Twin Cities can consolidate these trips and prevent items from ending up in landfill.

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Seattle-based startup “Ridwell” launched in specific zip codes in the Twin Cities in January. The program collects hard-to-dispose items every two weeks for recycling or reuse.

“Our goal is to divert as much waste from a bin and give it a second life,” said Ridwell Twin Cities General Manager EJ Tso.

Ridwell takes five categories – plastic wrap, wires, batteries, light bulbs and “featured category” – in partnership with local nonprofits.

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“A few weeks ago, one of the featured categories was canned food, so they will be collecting these boxes and non-perishable items and taking them to a local food bank, making it easier for me to do my part to help other members of the community who don’t have food,” Simone Parker, a south Minneapolis resident and Ridwell member mentioned.

So far, Ridwell is in south Minneapolis and Edina. Later in April, it will launch in St. Paul. Where Ridwell goes next is based on neighborhood interest. Residents can search by postal code on the Company Website or add their email to a waiting list. Membership costs between $12 and $16 per month.

Since launching in Seattle, Portland, Denver and Minneapolis, the company says it has saved £5 million on landfills. They said the more people participating in a postcode, the more efficient the pickup routes can be.

Ridwell said it doesn’t compete with curbside collection programs because they pick up different recyclables.

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So far, more than 1,000 Twin Cities residents have signed up.