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 Plastic reed packaging
Author: BethGraham 
Date:   2019-04-02 02:21

I'm wondering if the reed protectors that come with cane reeds are recyclable. For that matter, are Legere reeds and other plastic reeds recyclable?

I'm concerned about all the waste that seems to go along with playing a reed instrument and am trying to suss out what the most environmentally friendly option might be over the long haul.

On the face of it, cane reeds would seem to be more environmentally friendly than plastic ones -- until you start taking all those blasted protectors into consideration.

Thoughts?



Post Edited (2019-04-02 03:18)

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: crusius 
Date:   2019-04-02 02:33

There are reeds that come in paper packages - Behn Arias and Peter Leuthner come to mind. I'm thinking of switching to those just to avoid the silly Vandoren packaging.

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: BethGraham 
Date:   2019-04-02 03:17

Interesting ... I'm going to have to look into these brands. (I don't think my local shop carries them, though.)

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Roxann 
Date:   2019-04-02 03:51

You can order then directly from Brad Behn. Besides using the Arias, I also use the Pilgerstofer reeds that he sells.

Check him out at
https://www.clarinetmouthpiece.com/

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: BethGraham 
Date:   2019-04-02 03:55

Many thanks. I'm in Canada, so will have to see if shipping plus the exchange rate put these out of my league.

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Katrina 
Date:   2019-04-02 19:18

Steuer reeds also come in paper/cardboard. Of course the whole box is still wrapped in cellophane. Other plus for Steuer: organic cane. (Not sure about the other brands mentioned above with respect to this, but I know the Steuers are.)

There may be a Canadian distributor for any reeds which might reduce your cost too...

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2019-04-02 19:50

I would throw out the idea that one plastic reed can last six months to a year. Even if not recyclable (and that needs to be a question for Legere directly) that is MUCH less waste than what one can generate in plastic water bottles in just one day.


I for one do put both the "cardboard" and the plastic window of my newly received Legere reeds into the local recycling bin.


Earth friendly solutions will be a much bigger issues as time marches on.



..............Paul Aviles



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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: mdj 
Date:   2019-04-02 21:47

This could be geographical location specific, perhaps...

I recycle 100% of my Legere reed packaging. I have yet a reed to fail on me but when I do, I will recycle as well in hopes they take it.

In the past, I have always recycled the plastic sleeves the cane reeds came in as well and those were always taken by the recycling folks.

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: BethGraham 
Date:   2019-04-02 22:36

I did do a bit of research last night, and Gonzalez touts their environmentally friendly packaging, too.

https://www.argendonax.com/eco-friendly-packaging

Paul: I intend to look into whether Legere reeds are themselves recyclable. Mdj: I've been tossing my reed protectors in with the recycling, too, and hoping for the best.

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2019-04-03 00:32

There is not a readily-available scientific answer to the question being asked. I doubt there is environmental research to support one type of reed over another...or one brand of reed over another; even based on packaging: perhaps one company's packaging is terrible for the environment, but its equipment runs efficiently, and is thus (as a whole) cleaner than the company offering its product in "eco-friendly" packaging - we really have no way of knowing. (I use Marca reeds which come in thin cardboard carriers...not because of the environment, but because I like the reeds.)

I'm curious how the impact of all of us reading/posting on this bulletin board over the thousands and thousands of highly-refined/manufactured devices, routers, stacks of servers, hosts, batteries, redundancies, electricity, transmission towers, etc., would compare to the environmental cost of the production of 20 boxes of reeds?
;^)>>>

Fuzzy



Post Edited (2019-04-03 00:33)

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Slowoldman 
Date:   2019-04-04 03:02

As far as the plastic packaging is concerned, as was pointed out to me a few years back on this site, there is often a very tiny recycling symbol on the plastic sleeves (at least the Vandoren ones).
They had eluded my aging eyes, apparently.

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: BethGraham 
Date:   2019-04-04 03:33

Slowoldman: Thank you for that information! I just took out a magnifying glass, and the Vandoren (and Juno) reed protectors indeed have the recycle symbol with the number 5 and PP below. It's located on the bottom of the long narrow side.

(I should have tried searching the forum before asking but, frankly, the search function on this site doesn't work with my device.)

Thanks again --
Slow Old Woman in Training

P.S. The earlier conversation came up as the number 1 hit on Google with search terms "clarinet reed package recycling": http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=236408&t=236267



Post Edited (2019-04-04 17:07)

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Katrina 
Date:   2019-04-04 16:49

OT (sort of): "Aspirational" recycling (i.e. putting things in in hopes that they're recyclable) does more harm than good:

https://www.popsci.com/how-to-recycle

Additionally, not all recycling centers take all kinds of plastic. Check with your provider before tossing items in the bin.

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2019-04-04 18:34

The advice I got from Legere is that it does depend on the municipality. If your recycling center requires a stamped number upon the item, then the Legere reed cannot be recycled because placing a stamp on the reed impedes its ability to be a reed. However, they are made of food-grade polypropylene and are technically recyclable. Further (according to Legere), a heavy user would go through roughly 15 grams per year which is less than the weight of a single water bottle. Since Legere cannot use old reeds or recycled material for new reeds, they do not have their own recycling program.






................Paul Aviles



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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Tom H 
Date:   2019-04-07 08:50

Admit being a relative novice re Legere reeds. I used one years ago until I chipped it. The one I have now (only to practice on) has lasted 2 years and plays the same as when new (not very well.....but, it's PLASTIC). My feeling is they should last forever unless you nick them by mistake. What else would make a plastic reed die?
I agree that worrying about plastic reeds for the environment compared to all the plastic in the world (especially in the giant Pacific Ocean "Gyre" that's been growing the last 2 decades)--is like worrying about someone smoking a cigarette outside compared to all the air pollution. Probably those VanDoren plastic protectors are little to worry about as well, considering their size compared to a plastic bottle, the number of players using them, and the high cost of VanDoren reeds nowadays (not that simple Ricos are cheap either).
I was thinking that here in NS we have to separate stuff for recycling (common in most places now?). Wouldn't it be fine to just drop the reed cases and Legere's in with the "plastics" and they'd be recycled (however that does work)?

The Most Advanced Clarinet Book--Austin Macauley Publishers
tomheimer.ampbk.com/
austinmacauley.com/author/heimer-tom (PDF samples here)


Post Edited (2019-04-08 05:07)

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Slowoldman 
Date:   2019-05-01 00:46

Regarding recycling Legere reeds, I just received an email newsletter from Legere with the following information:

"Did you know that regardless of plastic material, recycling depots require items to be a large enough size in order to be accepted? Légère reeds are too small to fit the minimum size requirements despite being 100% recyclable polypropylene.

With that said, there is an effective way to recycle Légère reeds! When your Légère reed has reached the end of it's playing life, put it inside a sealed recyclable container with a number 5 recycling stamp (yogurt containers are a good option!). Recycle the container with your used Légère reed inside so it will be accepted as part of the larger item and recycled properly. "

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2019-05-01 01:15

It's a frustrating fact that recycling rules are almost entirely local - sometimes even the same collection company will have different contracts with different localities. Some collection companies don't want closed containers or containers with things inside them because the contents can jam machinery. And then they don't always recycle what they say they're going to recycle. Apparently, according to some of the reporting I've seen on TV, a lot of the U.S. plastic and other recyclables were being packed up almost completely co-mingled and sent to China, which was buying it by the mega-ton. Now, China has apparently stopped buying most of it. It's expensive (read apparently unprofitable) to process here in the U.S., so much of what we turn in as recyclable material ends up in the same landfills as the rest of our trash.

None of this really contradicts Legere's advice (I got the same email this afternoon), but the bottom line seems to be that no matter how conscientious you are about trying to comply with all the varying regulations wherever you live, you may still be contributing to the landfills recycling is meant to reduce.

Wouldn't it be a real contribution if Legere itself would accept returns of worn-out reeds and maybe find a way to re-use the polypropylene?!

Karl

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2019-05-01 01:47

kdk wrote:

> Wouldn't it be a real contribution if Legere itself would
> accept returns of worn-out reeds and maybe find a way to re-use
> the polypropylene?!

Back in the 1950/60s the soda/pop companies did this (at least on a local level). The bottling companies invented washers to help automate the cleaning of the glass bottles, and then re-bottled. Pretty efficient compared to today's recycling protocols.

I'm curious how much energy/carbon it would take for Legere to recycle compared to making new?

Fuzzy

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: BethGraham 
Date:   2019-05-01 01:55

kdk wrote:

> Wouldn't it be a real contribution if Legere itself would
> accept returns of worn-out reeds and maybe find a way to re-use
> the polypropylene?!

Yes, yes, and yes!

I decided, finally, to try out the Legere reeds (2.25 Classic, FWIW). On the whole, it seems like there's less plastic waste associated with them than with most cane reed packaging. (I am still using cane reeds along with the Legeres, though.)

For now, I'm thinking I'll just collect the old Legere reeds in the hope that they accept returns down the road. If the K-cup folks can do it, why can't they? I think it'd be a real plus for their brand.

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 Re: Plastic reed packaging
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2019-05-01 08:05

K-cups don't need to have the sort of compliance a reed has have to sound good, and that is the issue. Reconstituting the material causes it to loose some of its "snap."


Of course as was stated to me and posted here above, being a recyclable material, if your local processing plant does not require a printed number upon the item to be recycled, Legere reeds are indeed recyclable (according to Legere).





................Paul Aviles

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