With single use plastics currently being on trend as a hot topic, what can we as shooters do to mitigate our use of such products? We are currently seeing a reduction in our use of plastic wads, which is great news. Our game sales are now 88% fibre wad and increasing and our overall sales of fibre wad products is currently at 80% so the market appears to be moving in the right direction. Hull Cartridge Co have recently announced that they will not be producing any plastic wad options in their whole game range for this coming season with the exception of the Super Fast Pigeon. Plastic wad use on the clay circuit is also moving in the right direction, with only some dedicated specialist clay grounds and major competitions allowing their use. If you think about it, if all clay shooting moved to fibre wads, it would still be the same ten or a dozen top shots winning the competitions.
And so to the other bits of plastic used in cartridges and that is the case itself and the plastic base wads used. These tend to be High Density Polypropylene (HDPP) which is a common single use plastic. However there is a solution – recycling! Shotgun cartridges are notoriously difficult and therefore expensive to re-cycle. The problem is separating the plastic case from the steel head which will be either brass or nickel plated. Agri Cycle (www.agri-cycle.uk.com), who recycle lots of agricultural plastics based in Lincolnshire, are about the only company in the UK who do this and they use a machine which essentially shreds the whole lot and then separates the metal from the plastic with an electro magnet. The plastic is then used to make a variety of products including outdoor furniture.
The problem is the cost of getting the empty cases to them, but here at Just Cartridges, we are offering a no cost service to our customers in an effort to try and increase the amount of empty cases that get re-cycled, rather than sending them to land fill. Any of our customers who wish to bring their empties to our warehouse can leave them with us and we will pay for them to be collected and processed by Agri Cycle. Whilst we cannot collect them from our delivery customers, if you are passing we will be happy to take them from you and do our bit to increase re-cycling and reduce plastic pollution.
Plastic is a worldwide problem, but as shooters we can do our bit as outlined above so let’s all make an effort to try and make some small contribution to reducing the impact of plastic in the environment.