Convinced that there was a better way to get people to recycle more and determined to challenge the status quo, a young start-up called Lasso Loop has developed the first home recycling appliance: a device capable of processing seven of the seven most commonly used materials in the home: plastics - currently PET and HDPE - clear, green and brown glass, and steel and aluminium.
About the size of a washing machine, the Lasso features internal sensors, cameras and AI machine learning, guaranteeing the consistency and purity required to ensure materials can be remanufactured and made new again.
From loading to storage, in just 5-15 minutes, the machine sorts, steam cleans, and removes contaminants like food, grease, dirt, and sticky labels. It then grinds, crushes, and shreds the loaded items.
At the base of the appliance are seven odour-proof storage compartments, sized proportionally to average household intake, to store the processed material. The storage levels for each product, their monetary values and equivalent CO2 savings are all tracked and followed in real-time via the Lasso app. Once full, the Lasso will send an alert to schedule a pickup, while in qualifying areas, Lasso also supports bottle deposit schemes.
While not yet commercial, the machine can be reserved via Lasso Loop’s website, with delivery projected for 2023.
To further incentivise prospective users, Lasso has also partnered with Plastic Bank, contributing $10,000 to the social enterprise to become an official partner. Plastic Bank builds ethical recycling ecosystems in coastal communities and reprocesses the materials for reintroduction into the global supply chain. Collectors in Plastic Bank's ecosystem receive a premium for the materials they collect which helps them provide basic family necessities such as groceries, cooking fuel, school tuition, and health insurance.
The company has marked the partnership with the launch of its new "Invite a Friend" initiative for reservation holders. Under this scheme, holders of reservations invite friends to participate and are rewarded with a $100 gift from Lasso Loop for every friend that subsequently reserves and takes delivery of an appliance. Lasso will also gift $100 to the friend - and contribute another $100 to the Plastic Bank.
"Lasso Loop's partnership with Plastic Bank will accelerate Lasso's industry changing impact," said Aldous Hicks, Lasso Loop co-founder. "Plastic Bank has already achieved a major milestone by removing one billion plastic bottles from the world's oceans. Whilst we are striving to change the future of recycling, with Plastic Bank's help, we will also work toward cleaning up the plastic that has already made its way to our oceans as a result of the currently broken recycling system."
There is no limit to the number of reservation holders who can earn cash and contribute to Plastic Bank's efforts.