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Solway wins garden in clean competition

Colgate’s Gerald Leonard celebrates with Solway Primary School’s recycling stars. PHOTO/SAM TATTERSFIELD

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Solway Primary School has won a garden set, all made from recycled oral care products, and $300 worth of seeds and plants from Mitre 10 to fill it.

They were one of two winning schools in a competition to recycle as much oral care waste – toothbrushes, floss, toothpaste tubes and caps – as they could.

Each set includes one garden bed, one park bench and one bin made from oral care waste.

The bed Solway won houses spinach and silverbeet plants and is beside a larger existing bed filled with plants bought with the $300 prize money.

School principal Mark Bridges said the school gathered around 6kg of packaging, and old toothpaste containers.

The Colgate Community Garden Challenge was put on by Colgate and Terracycle, a US-based company that recycles “unrecyclable” waste like toothpaste containers and toothbrushes.

The garden set competition aims to link gardening and healthy eating, and oral care, as well as promoting the benefits of reusing plastic.

Terracycle’s Daria Romanos said Colgate paid for the recycling programme, and New Zealand Post provided free shipping.

Their support meant Terracycle could recycle otherwise unrecyclable waste, she said.

She hoped the competition and garden prize would encourage pupils to eat healthily and continue gardening.

Anyone can send 2kg of oral care waste free to Terracycle’s recycling plant through New Zealand Post by signing up at www.terracycle.com

Wairarapa MP Alastair Scott attended the garden presentation on Monday to promote Terracycle, and the competition.

Solway recycled over 250 pieces of waste to the competition, which, recycled over 250,000 pieces.

The biggest recycling school in the country was Te Anau School in Southland.

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