Some recycling or waste management companies promote free pickups for qualified businesses as a method to increase the perceived value of their services. As your parents or grandparents likley said at some point “Nothing is free”. This applies to the transportation of recyclables.

Business recycling and corporate sustainability programs can be profitable as well as good for the environment. It is important however to distinguish the value of the commodities from their associated costs in order to effectively manage. Commercial transportation can be very expensive with todays high fuel costs, labor, and maintenance. If a supplier is offered a “free pickup” it is typically because the value of the material exceeds the costs of transportation and handling. It is typically best to isolate the transportation to best understand all costs, revenue, and opportunities for improvement. The transportation costs can still be rolled into the recycling services offered, if preferred, but in order to understand the actual rabate value, it is best to isolate.