Kodak and Wal-Mart Launch Nationwide Recycling Program

Eastman Kodak Company (NYSE: EK) and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) have announced the launch of a national program to recycle used materials from in-store picture kiosks. The program is underway at about 4,100 Wal-Mart stores and Sam's Clubs in the U.S. that operate KODAK Picture Kiosks, and is expected to annually recycle 2 million pounds of thermal printer ribbon, spools and cartridges. That amount is equivalent to the weight of approximately six, 250-passenger commercial airliners.

The KODAK Picture Kiosk is a walk-up, in-store photo station where consumers can quickly and easily make photo prints, enlargements, greeting cards, calendars, invitations and more starting with prints, CDs or digital camera cards. Included in the Wal-Mart recycling program will be all three components used in the kiosk: printer ribbon, plastic spools and cartridges. These components are primarily made of polyethylene terphthalate (PETE) and polystyrene, which are plastics that are widely recycled today.

These materials will be collected in each store and sent regularly to one of several Wal-Mart Return Centers. From there, Wal-Mart recyclers, with Kodak's assistance, will separate the materials and process them for reuse. In a related effort to further reduce waste and impact to the environment, Kodak has introduced a change in the way these thermal materials are packaged by removing the bubble wrap around the donor spool which decreases the overall package size and weight.

Kodak, which was recently named a Wal-Mart "Supplier of the Year, Photo Department / Electronics," has been a pioneer in the recycling arena for nearly two decades. Since 1990, Kodak has recycled well over one billion one-time use cameras (OTUC) in conjunction with numerous partners, including Wal-Mart. Today, Kodak's Responsible Growth goals provide for product stewardship across the company's commercial and consumer product portfolios.

In January, Kodak was also named one of the "Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World," a list compiled by Corporate Knights, Inc., based on data from Innovest Value Strategic Advisors. Kodak has been selected for the list in all four years of its existence. Additionally, The Roberts Environmental Center, a research institute associated with Claremont McKenna College, has announced that Kodak has received an "A+" sustainability rating in the Scientific, Photo and Control Equipment business sector.