Wednesday, April 17, 2019 2:45 PM
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla.—In an effort to address the estimated 420 million plastic lenses (including new purchases and redos) disposed by the optical industry every two years, Costa launched an ambitious new plan, paving the way for eyecare professionals and the optical industry to tackle the problem, according to the company. The Kick Plastic Lens Recycling Program, announced last month at Vision Expo East, is an innovative program that encourages eyecare professionals to collect, recycle and repurpose plastic lenses from optical frames or sunglasses.
Protecting the oceans it calls home is one of Costa’s main brand values, and it inspired the company’s larger Kick Plastic initiative to raise awareness for how waste from single-use plastic pollutes the oceans. Plastic is the number one trash produced globally and takes over 400 years to decompose.
Costa has partnered with Piedmont Plastics to implement the first-ever program to recycle optical plastic lens waste and repurpose into a variety of products, such as: safety glasses, motorcycle helmet shields and scuba masks to name a few. Two Piedmont Plastics locations are participating at this time: Piedmont Plastics – West, 17000 Valley View Ave., La Mirada, Calif. 90638 and Piedmont Plastics – East, 2175, Mason Ave., Daytona Beach, Fla. 32117.
ECPs who are interested in being part of the movement to address plastic pollution can become a Costa Kick Plastic Ambassador. In return for their support, they will receive a special designation as a Kick Plastic Ambassador on the Costa dealer locator website as well as Kick Plastic water bottles for their staff and communication materials to encourage patients to join the movement and #kickplastic. Contact Costa at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Just after the show, Costa told Vision Monday, “We’ve been overwhelmed and gratified by the post-launch success of the program. We had an additional 50 ECPs sign up to be Kick Plastic Ambassadors, nearly doubling our prior participation—signaling the industry’s interest in resources that help them with sustainability.”
“For 35 years, Costa has been committed to making great sunglasses and protecting the water we love. Working together across the optical industry to create sustainable solutions that help protect our planet and address plastic pollution is a priority for us,” said Holly Rush, CEO, Costa.
“Our lens recycling program is a tangible way we can all work together to create meaningful change—our goal is to onboard 1,000 practices in year 1, which will allow us to recycle and repurpose over 50 tons of plastic lenses. Costa is the first in the industry to invest in and offer a program like this available to everyone—paving the way for future initiatives and increased sustainability for the optical industry as a whole,” Rush said.
Costa was honored by the industry via the
Vision Monday and 20/20 EyeVote program as the leader in the 2017 Social Purpose: Company and 2018 and 2017 Social Purpose: Brand categories. Costa utilizes bio-based, eco-friendly resin in most of its nylon sunglasses and optical frames, greatly reducing their emissions and overall carbon footprint.