Note to manufacturers: your green products (including recycled products) have to compete on quality. If someone buys a recycled product and discovers it’s crappy, not only are they a one-time customer who won’t repeat, but they’re also a negative talking machine, trashing not just your product but in many cases, green products or recycled products in general.
In other words, any time you put out crap in the name of selling recycled products, you hurt the prospects of every green business. Don’t rush to market; take the time to get the quality right first!
This rant was inspired by the cleanup after my daughter’s Passover Seder. She had recycled aluminum foil. I was excited to see it, as I hadn’t known such a thing was available in the consumer market. But my excitement quickly turned to frustration when I tried to use it, and discovered it was so brittle that I had to use about three times as much; it ripped wherever I touched it. It was as bad as the first generation of biodegradable diapers that we tried to use when she was a toddler, circa 1990. As bad as the solar cell-phone charger I bought a year or two ago that was so ineffectual I returned it for a refund.
Now, I’m a committed green, and I will give recycled aluminum foil another try in five years or so. But if this had been my first experience of a recycled product, it probably would have been my last.