Recycling Program

Step 1

Masks and respirators are used to protect our community

Step 2

Used masks an respirators are disposed to Vitacore bins

Step 3

Vitacore bins are collected and safely transported to a facility

Step 4

Used masks and respirators are sorted and sterilized through a high heat process

Step 5

Sterilized used masks and respirators are melted down into polypropylene pellets

Step 6

Polypropylene pellets are repurposed (e.g. construction material)

Why We Recycle

At Vitacore we are committed to providing the best quality masks and respirators to our customers, while also limiting our environmental footprint. Through the Covid-19 pandemic masks are vital in keeping our people safe and our healthcare systems functioning, but we feel obligated to address the waste that is a byproduct of the increased need for disposable face masks. We estimate that over 60,000 tons of Covid-19 related single-use masks and respirators will be used over the next year in Canada. Furthermore, it is estimated that as many as 1.5 billion improperly disposed masks could end up in our world’s oceans this year. Our team of innovators at Vitacore has paved the way for manufacturing respirators in Canada and we are paving the way for a more effective way to recycle disposable masks. Our recycling program keeps masks out of landfills by providing bins for safe mask and respirator disposal. These masks and respirators are collected then sterilized, broken down and repelletized, and given a second life.

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Why We Recycle

VITACORE LAUNCHES CANADA’S FIRST RECYCLING PROGRAM FOR SINGLE-USE MASKS AND RESPIRATORS

The end-to-end pilot program aims to reduce the pollution in Canada’s landfills and create a more sustainable future

Vancouver, B.C. – In partnership with McMaster University and the University of British Columbia, Vitacore Industries Inc. is launching Canada’s first single-use mask and respirator end-to-end recycling program aimed at reducing the environmental impact of single-use PPE. The pilot program officially  launched across Metro Vancouver on February 1st providing PPE recycling bins at Long Term Care and Urgent Care Facilities at no cost including City Centre Urgent and Primary Care Centre in downtown Vancouver and North Vancouver Urgent and Primary Care Centre. This program provides front-line workers with the opportunity to recycle their single-use face masks and CAN95 respirators and will be expanded to include bins across the country.  
Once collected, the single-use masks and respirators will be sterilized by Vitacore before being sent to McMaster University to be broken down, repalletized and given a second life. Polypropylene, the plastic used in single-use masks and respirators, can be manufactured into construction materials used to reinforced concrete or siding for buildings, reducing the amount of waste heading to landfills. Furthermore, to expand the possible uses for the repalletized materials, ongoing research is still being conducted by McMaster University.
According to Vitacore president Mikhail Moore, “Over 63,000 tons of Covid-19 related single-use masks and respirators will be used over the next year in Canada, significantly contributing to the pollution in our landfills and oceans. Vitacore is committed to not only providing the highest quality PPE to Canadians, but also to a sustainable future”.
“From product conception to point of use and disposal, we are developing a blueprint for maximizing sustainability in the life cycle of polyolefin based PPE products.” Says Yang Fei, Director of Research and Development at Vitacore.
Vitacore was created in Canada, by Canadian innovators to support Canadian healthcare professionals during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. In August 2020 Vitacore became the first Canadian company to receive Health Canada authorization to produce N95 equivalent respirators, CAN95s, on home soil. Helmed by local business leaders, the privately-held company has quickly grown to a team of over 75 employees including engineers and medical professionals at its state of the art facility in Burnaby, BC. 
"Environmental sustainability is one of the thematic pillars for research at McMaster's Centre of Excellence in Protective Equipment and Materials (CEPEM). This project illustrates the innovative approaches the centre is taking, along with its partners, to advance long-term sustainable use of PPEs by the public and healthcare workers," says Ravi Selvaganapathy, CEPEM's director and Canada Research Chair in Biomicrofluidics. This month, CEPEM received $1.2M in funding from the Government of Ontario to expand its testing infrastructure and partnerships with Canadian companies, such as Vitacore.
For more information on Vitacore and the PPE recycling program, please contact us .