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Co-op launches electrical recycling trial in Manchester stores


The Co-op has rolled out a trial with tech-recirculation start up, Spring, in its Manchester stores.

The trial will help consumers cut e-waste and unlock the value in their unwanted phones and electronic devices.

The first Co-op stores in Manchester to host Spring’s ‘tech-recirculation pods’ are located in High Street and the Green Quarter.

The move is designed to make recirculating electronic devices that can be reused or recycled more accessible, helping to keep valuable materials in use for longer and avoiding e-waste while consumers turn their unwanted devices items into cash.

The service sees Spring’s high tech kiosk-style pods in store, where shoppers can quickly and easily sell old devices such as phones, tablets, e-readers and smartwatches. The devices are then repaired, refurbished, reused, or recycled.

Spring’s pods accept almost 14,000 different devices and customers receive payment to their Spring account within 1-3 days. The money can be simply transferred to a bank account or to charity. Where devices cannot be re-used, Spring will ensure all components are recycled so nothing goes to landfill or incineration.

Mark Matthews, Co-op’s director of innovation and format, said: “Co-op’s partnership with Spring will enable more communities to recycle or reuse their electronic devices locally, unlocking the value in forgotten phones and other unwanted tech and preventing unnecessary and avoidable e-waste. If we are going to have a natural environment which we are proud to pass on to future generations we need action to be taken now. By making it easier for consumers to make small changes to their everyday lives, it can add up to make a big difference for our environment.”

Research has found that UK households and businesses produce 1.45 million tonnes of electrical waste each year. Almost half of UK households have between two and five unused electronic devices sitting at home.

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