Interested in learning more about our processing plans?
What We Are Making from Soft Plastic Packaging...
Developing an end-to-end supply chain for one of the world’s most problematic materials takes time. Soft plastic packaging is tricky because it includes such a variety of different plastics. That being said, we are thrilled to share the outcome from our last couple of years’ work with two exciting developments regarding the end-use of your soft plastics:
- We partnered with IQ Renew to develop a Soft Plastics Processing Facility that sorts soft plastics into a consistent high purity stream (‘top fraction’) and mixed polymer lower grade stream (‘bottom fraction’). We have been working diligently to transform the top fraction into injection moulded products and plastic films. The results have exceeded our expectations, and although there remains work to do, we are now close to getting this ‘top fraction’ of polymers back to products for industry and the community!
- Introducing Remade Durable that is implementing processing to convert the lower grade ‘bottom fraction’ into agricultural and industrial products right here in Australia. These innovative products cater to agricultural, civil, and industrial applications – products include durable posts and bollards. We are establishing processing in Northern NSW with a plan to deliver products during 2024. If you or someone you know is interested in exploring these products, please fill out our expression of interest form here.
Learn more about ReMade Durable here:
It’s simple to join!
1. Download the Curby app
2. Complete the Registration in the app
3. If Curby is available near you, select a program
That’s It! You’ll receive an email with the next steps!
Once your bag is full of soft plastics, you’re ready to Curby it!
When the bag is full, place a Curbytag on your bag and scan one of the QR codes your using the Curby app…
And into your yellow lid recycling bin it goes!
As we partner with Councils, we tap into their existing bin collection service and your CurbyBag is collected as normal along with all your other recycling!
What is the Curby mission?
Curby’s mission is to use technology to educate and empower the community to make environmentally-conscious choices and track their impact. By partnering with local councils and industry leaders, and providing tools and information, Curby aims to increase recycling of challenging materials to reuse/recycle, diverting higher quality materials from landfills and back into industry/community, to create a more sustainable Australia through its innovative kerbside recycling program. The goal is to transform challenging targeted materials (such as soft plastic) into valuable resources, and expand the Curby platform to help reuse and recycle resources, and rescue the environment – for all creatures great and small.
How do I join the Curby Soft Plastics Program?
The Curby Soft Plastics Program is currently being implemented in areas where both councils and recyclers agree to collect soft plastics from kerbside bins using a barcoded Curby-Tagged bag.
As of early 2023, this is limited to a few councils in New South Wales (namely Central Coast Council, Newcastle City Council, and Tamworth Regional Council). In addition, trial programs are currently active within Adelaide City Council and City of Port Adelaide Enfield.
To find out if the program is available in your area, download the Curby App and register with your home address. Anyone can download the Curby App to get updates about the program – just click one of the links below in your smart device.
iPhone users – App Store
Android users – Google Play
If your council is participating, you will receive a pack in the post with tags and information to get started. If the program is not yet available in your council, you can still register to show interest (and help us to make a strong case for the implementation of effective recycling programs in communities throughout Australia) and be notified when it becomes available.
When will the Curby Soft Plastics Program be available in other councils?
We’re currently managing the Curby Soft Plastics Program with several councils and have trial programs in other areas. We’re planning to expand to more councils as soon as we can, but we need the support of the recycling industry and producers of targeted materials. We also want to make sure the program is running smoothly before expanding. We’ll be working with our partners and members to ensure the program is successful and operating at capacity in 2023 and beyond. Our ultimate goal is to help the community recycle all of their soft plastics and other materials, like clothing, in the most sustainable way possible. We’re using insights from the Curby Soft Plastics program to encourage our partners to build the necessary infrastructure to support the program nationwide. It might not happen overnight, but we believe it’s a journey worth taking to protect our planet now and in the future.
What can I do if Curby isn’t available in my area yet?
We encourage you to register your interest for a Curby Program by downloading the Curby app and completing this survey: Click here to complete the “Help us bring Curby to your Council” survey.
In the meantime, if you download the Curby app, we can let you know as soon as a program becomes available to you.You’ll not only gain access to program updates but also contribute to our efforts in promoting effective recycling initiatives throughout Australia.
One day we hope to have a more improved solution for recycling soft plastics! So stay tuned for updates.
What is a CurbyTag?
A CurbyTag is a sticker that you must attach to the outside of your CurbyBag (or any soft plastic shopping bag) once it is filled with clean, soft plastic and tied shut. The CurbyTag includes a QR code that will be used to identify which type of material is in the bag at the recycling centre and track the success of the Curby Soft Plastics program.
Why is it important to scan/ use a CurbyTag?
A Curby Tag has two primary functions; one, to enable MRF operators to correctly identify the bag as program material and be able to pick it, and, two to enable us to collect more accurate information about how much soft plastics is being generated in different Council areas, leading to increased provenance and traceability.
What will happen if I forget to use a CurbyTag?
If you forget to use a CurbyTag on your captured soft plastics, they may not be properly identified and could potentially be sent to landfill. To ensure proper identification and recycling, please follow the instructions on your yellow CurbyBag (note you can also use ANY plastic shopping bag to capture your soft plastics) and attach the CurbyTag to the outside of the bag once it is filled with clean, soft plastic and tied shut. It is important to note that if you do not have a CurbyTag, do not place your soft plastics in the recycling bin.
Why is it important to place my soft plastics in a bag and not put them in my yellow bin loose?
There are a number of reasons why soft plastics must be placed in a bag before being recycled through the yellow bin collection system:
- Loose soft plastics can become wind blown litter as your bin is being emptied into the bin truck
- Loose soft plastic becomes wrapped around equipment at the material recovery facility where it can cause maintenance issues
- Loose soft plastics are lightweight and flexible making it hard for sorting equipment to separate them from paper, creating contamination issues
- Loose soft plastic is more difficult for staff to pick out of the incoming comingled recycling
- Placing your Curby soft plastics in a bag also prevents them from being contaminated by other recyclables in the yellow bin
Collecting soft plastics in a plastic bag and securing it with a CurbyTag alleviates all of these issues.
When will my requested CurbyPack arrive?
We ship all orders via Australia Post within 5 business day of receiving them. Delivery usually takes 2-3 weeks, but during the holidays and/or Covid, it could be up to 6 weeks. We know it’s frustrating to wait.
Does Curby have drop off locations?
Currently curby is only available through the yellow bin recycling service, as an opt in program for participating Councils. If the full Curby program is available in your Council area, there is absolutely no limit on how many bags you can recycle. So keep filling them up and we’ll take care of the rest.
Do you have a list of items I can and cannot include in my soft plastics collection bag?
Yes! Find it here
How do you collect my Curby tagged bag?
The Curby Program taps into the existing bin collection service offered through Council, all the recycling (including the Curby tagged bag) is placed inside the yellow bin to be collected on your normal bin collection day. From here, your recycling makes it’s way to the recycling facility where we recover your Curby tagged bag!
The only new steps for you are to scan your Curby tagged bag and pop it in your recycling, we’ll do the rest!
What soft plastic bag can I use in replacement of a CurbyBag?
There are plenty of other types of plastic packaging that can be used in place of shopping bags for recycling soft plastics. We encourage the use of any soft plastic packaging, this includes things like the packaging that toilet paper comes in, potato packaging, or even dog biscuit bags!
By using a variety of soft plastic packaging, we can promote the reuse of existing materials and reduce the amount of virgin plastics used, ultimately leading to a lower carbon footprint and more opportunities to recover and recycle soft plastics!
PLEASE DO NOT USE PAPER OR FABRIC SHOPPING BAGS
Where does my soft plastic go once it has been collected? NSW
Once you have placed your CurbyBag in the yellow lidded bin, your CurbyBag will make its way to the Material Recovery Facility (MRF), where it will be picked out and separated from the rest of the comingled recycling. From here it is baled and sent for processing, which may vary between MRFs depending on the processing options available.
For our current full programs operating in NSW, the baled collected material is sent Smart Processing Engineered Commodity facility operated by iQ Renew. This facility uses the technology to size and sort a broad range of plastic polymers by type and colour. For example, these machines can tell the difference between a bread bag and tim tam wrapper! The plastics are separated into a high purity stream and a mixed polymer lower grade stream. From here the material is shredded and is then available for use by Australian manufacturers to make products like packaging and films, footpaths and roads, low carbon cement and other manufactured products like fence posts.
This may differ for trial programs that Curby is undertaking collections for – such as the National Plastics Recycling Scheme (NPRS) trials being run by the Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC). If you are in these councils: Adelaide and Port Adelaide Enfield, please click the link to find out more.
What kinds of processing are we working with partners to bring online?
We are developing an end-to-end supply chain for one of the world’s most problematic materials, it takes time! Soft plastic packaging is tricky because it includes such a variety of different plastics. That being said, we are thrilled to share the outcome from our last couple of years’ work with two exciting developments regarding the end-use of your soft plastics:
We have partnered with IQrenew to develop a Soft Plastics Processing Facility that sorts soft plastics into a consistent high purity stream (‘top fraction’) and mixed polymer lower grade stream (‘bottom fraction’). We have been working diligently to transform the top fraction into injection moulded products and plastic films. The results have exceeded our expectations, and although there remains work to do, we are now close to getting this ‘top fraction’ of polymers back to products for industry and the community!
Introducing ReMade Durable that is implementing processing to convert the lower grade ‘bottom fraction’ into agricultural and industrial products right here in Australia. These innovative products cater to agricultural, civil, and industrial applications – products include durable posts and bollards. We are establishing processing in Northern NSW with a plan to deliver products during 2024. If you or someone you know is interested in exploring these products, please fill out our expression of interest form here!
Can Schools or Businesses participate in the Curby Program?
At the moment the Curby program is only available for households. We understand that businesses, schools, and other community groups also generate a significant amount of soft plastics, and we appreciate your patience as we work to expand our program to include these groups in the future. We are committed to growing the program at a manageable pace to ensure that we have the capacity to process all incoming soft plastics. Our growth plan is aligned with the new soft plastic processing infrastructure that we are helping to bring online in 2023.
Does Curby have collection programs for other materials?
Currently the only collection program we have in place is for soft plastics, however from time to time we do conduct trials for other materials. Please check in from time to time to see if there are any available in your area.
Please know that we are aware of several issues with the current version of the app and we have plans to redevelop the app in the near future to create a smoother and more interactive experience.
While most technical difficulties can be addressed by enacting the actions set out below, some rare cases may not be able to be resolved in the current version of the app. We aim to address these issues in the future version of the app.
The Curby App is not scanning my CurbyTag.
Before contacting Customer support, please try the following actions:
- Check that the QR code you are scanning is not marked or worn or crinkled, if it is please try scanning a different QR code
- Check your phone has sufficient connection to the internet (either through wifi or through mobile data). If you have low data connection on mobile data, please switch to wifi if it is available
- Close and restart the Curby App
- Restart your phone
- Check that your phone camera app is registering QR codes properly by opening the camera app and seeing if it detects a Curby QR code
- Delete and reinstall the Curby App
- IF none of the above actions fix the problem please take a photo of the tag and a screenshot of the app scanning page and send these along with a description of the problem to customer support.
I am not receiving a verification code when I log into the Curby App.
Before contacting Customer support, please try the following actions:
- Check your junk email
- Refresh your inbox
- Check that your email address is the same one that your have linked to your Curby Account
- Check that you don’t have a firewall in place that may be preventing the verification code from coming though
- IF none of the above actions fix the problem, please send a description of the problem to customer support.