Binghampton Development Corporation Expands CHaRM Facility to Accept Foam

Binghampton Development Corporation, a non-profit community development corporation located in Memphis, Tennessee, has received a $50,000 grant from the Foodservice Packaging Institute’s Foam Recycling Coalition to add a foam densifier to its current Center for Hard to Recycle Materials (CHaRM) facility.

Over the last 18 years, the Binghampton Development Corporation has pursued revitalizing the historic Binghampton neighborhood of Memphis through housing and economic development as well as empowerment programs for those in poverty. The organization has cultivated revenue generating programs that focus on employing and educating new skills to neighborhood workers. Their latest endeavor, which began in fall 2021, is a development partnership to start recycling hard-to-recycle items that are currently contributing to the blight for many Memphis neighborhoods.

New recycling operations will assist in cleaning up neighborhoods for over 350,000 households and bring recycling services to the metro area’s 1.3 million residents. The first phase of the recycling program will begin with tire recycling, with future phases including disassembling and recycling old streetlights and recycling mattresses. These programs are expected to provide job training while recycling materials, including aluminum, copper, plastic, glass, steel and soon, foam polystyrene.

Foam Recycling Coalition funding allows the organization to purchase and install a high-capacity densifier unit to better manage its foam recycling collection at its facility. The densifier will allow the facility to accept foam materials, such as foodservice packaging, post-consumer foam packaging and padding, and production scrap from local businesses and residents.

“Memphis consumers currently do not have an option to recycle foam. With help from the Foam Recycling Coalition’s generous $50,000 grant, this new program gives us the opportunity to provide a service for this need from residents and small businesses,” says Andy Kizzee, business hub director of the Binghamton Development Corporation.

“Binghampton Development Corporation is doing incredible work to promote job training and material recovery that impacts neighborhoods in the greater Memphis area. The organization is providing the necessary services to recycle clean and empty foam packaging that is generated by residents and businesses,” says Natha Dempsey, president of the Foodservice Packaging Institute, which oversees the Foam Recycling Coalition. “It sets a great example of how one organization can expand its current programming and operations and educate residents as the capability to recycle foam polystyrene continues to increase across North America.”

The grant is made possible through contributions to the Foam Recycling Coalition, which focuses exclusively on increased recycling of post-consumer foam polystyrene. Its members include Americas Styrenics; CKF Inc.; Chick-fil-A; Dart Container Corp.; Dolco Packaging, Dyne-A-Pak; Genpak; INEOS Styrolution America LLC; Pactiv Evergreen; Republic Plastics.

Binghampton Development Corporation is the 22nd grant recipient to receive this funding since 2015. Over 6 million additional residents in the U.S. and Canada can recycle foam as a result of Foam Recycling Coalition grants. Visit www.RecycleFoam.org to learn about foam recycling, read about previous recipients, or apply for a grant.