Glass Isn’t Trash Initiativebottle_transparent

The IRC recently secured a grant from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management Recycling Market Development Board to increase glass recycling and improve the quality and quantity of glass headed to Indiana glass container manufacturers to make new glass containers and fiberglass.

Why Recycle Glass?

To keep quality material out of the landfill- glass is infinitely recyclable

To save energy – recycled glass saves 30% in energy costs

To save resources- more than a ton of natural resources are saved for every ton of glass recycled

To grow green jobs – glass recycling and manufacturing markets provide thousands of Hoosier jobs

Why Should Bars & Restaurants Participate?

The IRC is targeting bar/restaurant districts in Indianapolis and surrounding counties due to their significant use of glass beverage containers (most notably beer and wine bottles).

Restaurants and bars should seriously consider participating:

  • COST SAVINGS TO YOU: Diverting glass from the dumpster means less waste and thus potential disposal and cost savings – whether you pay per pick up or pay by weight
  • SUPPORT INDIANA’S ECONOMY: Recycled glass is in high demand from Indiana’s glass container and fiberglass manufacturers.
  • BUILD YOUR GREEN BUSINESS CRED: Join a growing community of green businesses in Indy and attract customers that care. And, your employees will take pride in their sustainable workplace!

What Will IRC Provide?

We understand the challenges bars and restaurants face when considering participation in any new effort: space limitations, staff turnover accompanied by ongoing and costly training, fast-paced work environments, late nights, and of course, a focus on meeting the bottom line. Adding recycling to the to-do list may seem a bit overwhelming. The IRC is here to help you ensure success. We are here to support your efforts. We want to work with you to develop a no-cost glass recycling program tailored to your specific bar/restaurant’s needs.  If together we can identify a critical mass of entities that generate glass and a space to locate a container within your business district, IRC will provide the following to maintain a free glass program for your district:


Supplies & Materials

Publicity & Promotion

Coordination & Communication

  • interior slim-jim bins
  • exterior toters / rolling carts
  • exterior 30yd container
  • signage for bins
  • educational materials


  • publicity in our press releases, social media, website, and public media announcement
  • promotional material to display in storefront
  • facilitation of all meetings
  • communication with hauler and restaurant re: pick-ups, contamination issues, etc.
  • trouble shooting, continued consulting, data collection, reporting
  • employee training

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Project Partner


Strategic Materials, Inc. (SMI) is the largest glass recycler in the nation, and Indy is fortunate to call home to one of their processing plants. SMI makes glass into “cullet” which becomes the raw material for new glass products, like beer and wine bottles. SMI, IRC’s financial partner, is offering a free glass hauling service to increase the supply of glass to Indiana glass container manufacturing plants.


Program Supporters