DMA's 'Recycle Please' Program Is Working! National Recovery Rates for Recycling of Direct Mail Now Surpass 60%
April 21, 2011 — The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) is pleased that the US Environmental Protection Agency has found that Standard Mail, which comprises 1.9 percent of all municipal solid waste, was recovered and recycled in 2009 at a rate of 63.4 percent – a marked increase from 40.7 percent recovery in 2008 and 5.2 percent recovery in 1990.
The growth in collection since 2007 represents a significant increase in recovery since DMA received approval from the Federal Trade Commission (along with Magazine Publishers of America and the Envelope Manufacturers Association) to begin our Recycle Please program. FTC approval was needed since any “recycling” labeling required a minimum threshold of communities nationwide having recycling options available, which FTC confirmed. DMA congratulates its members who have placed the Recycle Please icon or other recycling information on their mail pieces. It has worked.
Here is what EPA found: “Standard mail includes catalogs and other direct bulk mailings; these amounted to an estimated 4.7 million tons, or 1.9 percent of MSW generation, in 2009. Both groundwood and chemical pulps are used in these mailings. It was estimated that 3.0 million tons were recovered in 2009. The US Postal Service has implemented a program to increase recovery of bulk mail, and many curbside collection programs also include mail.” To read the full text of the EPA report, please click here.
Recycling is one worthy goal for effective solid waste management. In addition, DMA also reminds marketers that DMA’s Board of Directors has adopted a public Environmental Goal to reduce mail waste related to list hygiene significantly by 2013. In-house name suppression, DMAchoice, segmentation and modeling, and postal preparation are components of this strategy.
About Direct Marketing Association (DMA)
The Direct Marketing Association (www.the-dma.org) is the leading global trade association of businesses and nonprofit organizations using and supporting multichannel direct marketing tools and techniques. DMA advocates standards for responsible marketing, promotes relevance as the key to reaching consumers with desirable offers, and provides cutting-edge research, education, and networking opportunities to improve results throughout the end-to-end direct marketing process. Founded in 1917, DMA today represents companies from dozens of vertical industries in the US and 48 other nations, including nearly half of the Fortune 100 companies, as well as nonprofit organizations.
In 2010, marketers – commercial and nonprofit – spent $153.3 billion on direct marketing, which accounted for 54.2% of all ad expenditures in the United States. Measured against total US sales, these advertising expenditures generated approximately $1.798 trillion in incremental sales. In 2010, direct marketing accounted for 8.3% of total US gross domestic product. Also in 2010, there were 1.4 million direct marketing employees in the US. Their collective sales efforts directly supported 8.4 million other jobs, accounting for a total of 9.8 million US jobs.
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