Why U.S. Manufacturers Are Turning Their Attention to ‘Reshoring’

This article was originally published on INC.com and can be viewed here.

Companies around the country are increasingly cashing in on ‘reshoring’ opportunities.

Just two years after Tim Zimmerman learned American manufacturing was fleeing overseas, he tried to bring it back.

In 1990, Zimmerman, then the new salesperson at contract manufacturer Mitchell Metal Products, persuaded a maker of kids’ furniture to repatriate its production of hinges from China to his employer’s Merrill, Wisconsin, plant. “What boosted our effort was Tiananmen Square,” says Zimmerman, now co-owner and president of the $12 million company. Mitchell couldn’t match Asian prices, but the uncertainty the political protests caused made his prospective client nervous.

Zimmerman encouraged the furniture maker to conduct a risk analysis and calculate the financial exposure of missing a quarterly shipment. The numbers won the day. Working with Mitchell, the company began receiving parts shipments every three or four weeks, compared with quarterly shipments from the Chinese supplier. That stoked the customer’s growth, and it shifted more production to Mitchell.

But Mitchell benefited less from that early reshoring effort than did its client. Over more than two decades, the company successfully lured just a handful of small accounts from China. “There was a corporate mandate: We take cost out,” says Zimmerman. “It was an automatic attitude. ‘Sorry, Mitchell Metal Products. You can’t even compete.'”

In 2012, that started to change. Today, 8 percent to 10 percent of Mitchell’s volume comprises jobs captured from Asian manufacturers, a number Zimmerman expects will rise to 25 percent in five years. The increase is part of a tide of production flowing back to U.S. shores. In 2014, the number of American manufacturing jobs heading overseas and the number coming back reached rough parity, according to the Reshoring Initiative, a nonprofit based in Kildeer, Illinois. In 2016, the United States added a net positive 30,000 manufacturing jobs as a result of reshoring, that organization reports.

Some percentage of those jobs return in-house, as corporations like Ford and Boeing boost production at their domestic plants or open new ones. But small and midsize companies frequently offload at least some production to others. A study of close to 900 reshoring companies found that roughly 60 percent bestow their repatriated business on U.S. contract manufacturers or other third-party vendors. For companies like Mitchell Metal Products, the trend dangles juicy opportunities.

“I think U.S. manufacturers have learned a lot since the 2008 recession,” says Zimmerman. “Before, they had a lot of cash tied up in processes that were not fully efficient.” Widespread improvements in things like inventory management, Zimmerman says, “have set the stage for companies to effectively reshore.”

Getting more competitive

The most common explanation for an increase in reshoring is rising costs in China, where wages for manufacturing jobs tripled between 2005 and 2016, according to Euromonitor. But disenchantment with offshoring is broader than that.

Savings, for example, are often less spectacular than anticipated. Companies that focused on a per-piece rate may have missed a slew of additional costs, from shipping to auditing to travel. (The Reshoring Initiative offers a free online tool that helps companies calculate their total cost of offshoring. Many contract manufacturers use it in their pitches.)

In addition, “there is a recognition of risks that people did not recognize when they first offshored,” says John Gray, an associate professor of operations at Ohio State University’s Fisher College of Business. In a study conducted by Gray and two other researchers, small to midsize companies cited a litany of reasons they had chosen to bring home production. Among them: Asian factories’ use of unapproved suppliers or components, finished products that differed from samples, poor quality, intellectual property theft, and lack of responsiveness to problems.

“It’s not just that they offshored something that maybe they shouldn’t have because they did not think about hidden costs,” says Gray. “But they also did not think about how it would affect their ability to be responsive, deal with problems, and develop new products together.”

Customer expectations have also changed since 2001, when China’s entry into the World Trade Organization ratcheted production east. “The customers want it now,” says Harry Moser, president of the Reshoring Initiative. “Amazon can deliver it today or tomorrow, which means Amazon has to be able to receive inventory very quickly if there’s a surge in demand. If you are getting the product from somebody here, then that supply chain is feasible.”

Kathleen Sarniak, the CEO and owner of Jeannette Specialty Glass, has won back some customers’ offshored business by building organizational muscle where her Asian competitors are weak. The 65-employee company, which is based in Jeannette, Pennsylvania, makes glass for use in commercial and industrial light fixtures. In 2003, 30 percent of that business waltzed off to China.

Sarniak made up some of the loss by creating a branded line of glass sinks, a new category not easily replicated overseas. When the housing market crashed in 2008, she aggressively wooed the few lighting customers that still kept some small-volume work at Jeannette to bring back larger jobs they’d offshored.

Like Zimmerman at Mitchell Metal, Sarniak drilled down on cost of inventory, buying a 60,000-foot warehouse in 2010 where the company stocks large customer orders and then ships as needed. She also significantly beefed up its R&D and quality assurance functions, areas in which Chinese manufacturers often lag. Team members visit customer locations–something overseas producers can’t do–to help improve efficiency on their assembly lines. They also handle troubleshooting.

As a result of her efforts, five customers have reshored substantial orders to Jeanette, and Sarniak recently landed two new ones bringing back production from China. One of those accounts may amp her company’s growth by 30 percent. “It was costly, but we’ve made a lot of changes that allowed us to compete,” says Sarniak. “If you find out what is not being offered by the Asian vendor, then you can offer it and move ahead.”

Soup-to-nuts solutions

Offshore companies do maintain one significant edge over their U.S. counterparts: They are more likely to produce complete products, soup to nuts. “When they went to China, a lot of U.S. companies did not want to do their own assembly because of all the language and legal and other complications,” says Moser. “So it was advantageous for manufacturers there to develop a complete capability to take over a whole project.”

Moser says that Chinese companies are starting to buy U.S. injection molders, tool and dye makers, and other contract manufacturers in order to replicate those capabilities here. The appetite for such inclusive services and the potentially large-scale employment they promise is evident in the ardent pursuit of Taiwanese behemoth Foxconn by the states of Wisconsin and Michigan. Moser would like more U.S. manufacturers to develop skillsets to handle complete assemblies. He sees opportunities to build more companies like Jabil, an $18 billion global manufacturer started in 1966 by a couple of guys in Florida.

Zentech, a Baltimore-based contract manufacturer, is one company that handles projects from design through testing. It has successfully taken on two complete-assembly reshored projects since 2010: a wireless printer for coupons and a wearable device for volleyball players. But the company, with 200 employees and north of $50 million in revenue, has parted ways with four or five other reshoring customers over price.

One of those customers went back to China. The others cut bait for very low-priced manufacturers in the United States.

“The reason they were in Asia to begin with was that they were in price-sensitive markets,” says Zentech’s president Matt Turpin. “Products that are low complexity or have a low-reliability requirement have a low barrier to entry for people making them.” U.S. manufacturers in inexpensive regions with smaller, moderately skilled work forces are well positioned to pick up that work, says Turpin. For companies like Zentech, which specializes in complex military and medical products that affect lives, such jobs “became a race to the bottom.”

Although most reshoring isn’t right for Zentech, Turpin believes it will help the economy overall. “I would not pretend you are going to set up a manufacturing business focused on reshoring and be the darling of Wall Street,” he says. “But from a societal standpoint, reshoring is going to create jobs and generate economic activity. For the U.S., this is a growth area.”

CalRecycle Packaging Reform Workshop

Title: CalRecycle Packaging Reform Workshop
Location: Cal/EPA Headquarters Building, Byron Sher Auditorium (2nd Floor), 1001 I Street, Sacramento, CA 95812-4025
Start Time: 9/19/2017 1:00 PM
End Time: 9/19/2017 4:30 PM
Continuation of CalRecycle’s Packaging Reform policy model development process.  This workshop will build upon the policies discussed at the March 22, 2017 Packaging Reform Workshop.
Workshop documents will be posted as they are available and in advance of the workshop date
RMDZ Region: All
Zone: All Zones
Expected Attendance?: N/A
Website: http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/Actions/PublicNoticeDetail.aspx?id=2143&aiid=1954

CalRecycle Proposed State Mattress

Title: CalRecycle Proposed State Mattress Recycling Baseline & Goals Workshop
Location:   Cal/EPA Headquarters Building, Byron Sher Auditorium (2nd Floor), 1001 I Street, Sacramento, CA 95812-4025
Start Time: 8/15/2017 1:00 PM
End Time: 8/15/2017 4:00 PM
The Used Mattress Recovery and Recycling Act requires CalRecycle to establish, in consultation with the mattress recycling organization, the state mattress recycling baseline amount and the state mattress recycling goals.
The purpose of this workshop is to gather public comments and input on a draft staff proposal for the development of the state mattress recycling baseline amount and state mattress recycling goals.  An agenda and supporting documents for this workshop will be posted in advance of the workshop date.
RMDZ Region: All
Zone: All Zones
Expected Attendance?: N/A
Website: http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/Actions/PublicNoticeDetail.aspx?id=2157&aiid=1963

The Compost Story: A story for ourselves and our communities

See and share THE COMPOST STORY, starring a great new team of advocates: Adrian Grenier, Amy Smart, Rosario Dawson, Kendrick Sampson, Paul Blackthorne

Please join us, in your own community, to help make our world better?

Share this Facebook link

Retweet this link


Ways to share The Compost Story in your community:

and Join the Compost Challenge

  • Create a photo or video doing at least one of the challenges:
    1. Putting food in your compost or green bin
    2. setting up a compost bin for you or your friend
    3. buying a compost bin or already made compost
    4. collecting browns ie: fallen leaves
    5. sexy compost pic
    6. more to come! Follow us for updates @kissthegroundca
  • Post it on your social media, tag us @kissthegroundca & #compostlife (see thecompoststory.com for How to Play)
  • Every post enters into Giveaway worth $2K!

Facebook copy when sharing the video from Kiss The Ground page:

The Compost Story has launched! Starring @adriangrenier @rosariodawson @kendrick38 @amy smart @officialpaulblackthorne JOIN @kissthegroundca and participate the Compost Challenge! Enter now at thecompoststory.com (giveaway worth $2K)

Help share this important message so humanity can live regeneratively!

Instagram copy when uploading the video (add emojis!):

#thecompoststory has launched!! Starring @adriangrenier @rosariodawson @kendrick38 @smarthouse26 @paulblackthorne. Enter @kissthegroundca compost challenge ?? thecompoststory.com, giveaway worth $2K. Help spread this important message so humanity can live regeneratively. Live that #compostlife  


Twitter copy:

Enter @kissthegroundca Compost Challenge ft @adriangrenier @rosariodawson @PaulBlackthorne @kendrick38 @AmySmart26 https://youtu.be/bqDQD8cvO5Y

Share this video for International Compost Awareness Week! @kissthegroundca 
Don’t be trashy! Enter the Compost Challenge worth $2K by @kissthegroundca https://youtu.be/bqDQD8cvO5Y



 “The Compost Story” was produced by Kiss the Ground and Elevate Films.

Made possible by our partners: US Composting Council, Composting Council Research and Education Foundation, CA Association of Compost Producers, Kellogg Garden Products, CalRecycle, Tanks Green Stuff, Natur-Tech, EcoSafe, Orange County Sanitation District, and UC Cooperative Extension.

“The Compost Story” PSA video with Adrian Grenier, Rosario Dawson, Kendrick Sampson, Amy Smart, Paul Blackthorne, with celebrity promotions by Ian Somerhalder, Nikki Reed, Jason Mraz, Alison Teal.

With promotions, video screenings and sponsors by: Dr. Bronners, Cafe Gratitude, Thrive Market, Patagonia, Nutiva, Guayaki, Sambazon, Numi Tea, Moon Juice Shop, Kellogg’s, The Perennial Restaurant.

And a big thank you to our donors: Kellogg Garden Products, A1 Organics, Tanks Green Stuff, Zanker Recycling, Natur-tec, OCSD,R. Alexander Associates Inc., CalRecycle, New Earth Inc., Stop Waste- Alameda, EcoSafe, St Louis Composting, Elk Packaging, Vision Recycling, EDWW W. Pauley Foundation, Associated Labels, Texas Pure Products, Inland Empire Utilities Agency, Green Mountain Technologies and Los Angeles County Sanitation District.

Top 10 Technologies Small and Midsize Manufacturers Can’t Afford to Ignore

View original article by clicking here.

Manufacturers today are looking for innovative ways to differentiate themselves in the competitive global marketplace. Understanding customers’ needs in great detail has become an essential to being competitive.

One way to gain this understanding is to implement an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution. ERP solutions consolidate business operations, enhancing your businesses ability to be agile. Not only do these systems deliver on technology that you can boast about over coffee with a colleague, the business advantages include the ability to streamline your organization’s processes to reduce waste, improve throughput, and ultimately meet your customer’s value stream; improving odds for continued business in the future.


Delve into the “Top 10 Technologies Small and Midsize Manufacturers Can’t Afford to Ignore”, and you may see opportunities to reinvent the business processes you currently deploy by investmenting in new technology. You will also see barriers to complex industries come down as technology that bridges the gap for complying in these industries exist. Epicor has experience in nearly all industries in manufacturing, including Medical Device, A&D, Industrial Machinery, Electronics, Energy, and much more. Epicor can help your business reduce risk and add industry diversity to its strategy.

One company’s mission to help you fill vacancies with qualified staff!

Credentials, Competencies, and Careers: Creating a Competency-Based U.S. Credentialing System

By Roy A. Swift, Ph.D., Executive Director, Workcred

View Original Article By Clicking Here.

Certificates, certifications, badges, and licenses, what are they worth to the workforce? The last decade has seen huge growth in the number and variety of credentials, and this explosion has fueled a great deal of confusion among students, workers, job seekers, employers, and others. Job seekers can’t tell which credentials will help them earn and demonstrate their competencies, and obtain employment. Employers can’t identify the credentials that will ensure that employees know what a piece of paper says they know.

As more and more jobs require applicants to have training, education, or experience beyond a high school diploma, industry-based credentials have become a growing part of a competent workforce, providing new opportunities for job seekers and employers. But with less than 10% of the more than 4,000 personnel certification bodies active in the United States accredited by a third party, there is no common definition of quality or market value.

Even as the economy rebounds and unemployment drops, the United States faces a skills gap. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are 5.5 million job openings, and yet, 7.8 million individuals remain unemployed. This gap stems from a mismatch – many of today’s job seekers don’t have the competencies that industry is seeking for today’s high-skill manufacturing, technology, and service jobs.

A September 2014 survey by the Business Roundtable found that 52 percent of member CEOs considered the skills gap to be either “problematic” or “very problematic.” What’s even more alarming is that only 3 percent viewed the issue as “not a problem” at all.

At the same time, business leaders have doubts that U.S. higher education institutions in the U.S. are graduating students who meet their particular businesses’ needs. A 2014 Gallup poll revealed that only 11 percent of business leaders strongly agree that graduates have the necessary skills and competencies to succeed in the workplace. That’s in stark contrast to another recent survey, conducted by Inside Higher Ed in conjunction with Gallup, indicating that 96 percent of academic officers believe that they’re effectively preparing students for success in the workplace.

We can do better

Formed in 2014 as an affiliate of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), Workcred’s mission is to strengthen workforce quality by improving the credentialing system, ensuring its ongoing relevance, and preparing employers, workers, educators, and governments to use it effectively.

Through research, consulting, and educational fora, Workcred is working with industry, government, and training/education partners to improve the quality, effectiveness, and market value of credentials. Among other activities, we have been working closely with these groups to assess workforce needs, develop or revise credentials, create career pathways, and create better alignment between education/training, credentialing, and industry needs.

For example, Workcred is partnering with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Manufacturing Extension Partnership to examine the quality, effectiveness, and market value of manufacturing credentials through a comprehensive study.

The collaborative research project aims to:

  • Identify credentials being used by manufacturers that are representative of the industry.
  • Evaluate the quality of the credentials against national and/or international standards.
  • Determine the market value of credentials based on data from the credential issuer.
  • Determine how the credential is being used and how the effectiveness of the credential is being determined in work settings through interviews with HR department officials, work supervisors, and individuals who hold the credentials.
  • Identify the need for new credentials, the scope and outcomes needed of the credentials, and what organizations might be willing and capable of creating the credential.

Workcred is also involved in a groundbreaking technology initiative to create a web-based credential registry that will enable job seekers, students, workers, and employers to search for and compare credentials, just as you use travel apps to compare flights, rental cars,
and hotels. The registry will include educational degrees (AA, BA, BS, and MA degrees), certificates, industry certifications, occupational licenses, and micro-credentials.

Momentum and support for the registry are building fast. A new non-profit organization, Credential Engine, has been established to scale up the registry from its pilot phase and sustain its operation for the long term. Dozens of higher education institutions, credentialing organizations, and quality assurance (QA) entities are involved as registry participants who provide information about their credentials or QA processes to the registry, and more are signing on every day. By all indications, the registry is paving the way of the future credentialing ecosystem.

Call to Action – The Road Ahead

Achieving a coherent and navigable competency-based credentialing system is no simple matter, but it is within our reach. Like any worthwhile endeavor, it will require strategic partnerships and close collaboration between stakeholders, the business community, credentialing organizations, federal, state, and local governments, educational institutions, philanthropic associations, and more.

Workcred invites organizations involved or impacted by credentialing to join the call to action. If your organization is interested in teaming up with Workcred on research or collaborative activities focused on improving the U.S. credentialing system to improve talent supply chain management, or can benefit from Workcred’s expertise, contact us at [email protected]

For more information about Workcred, wisit www.workcred.org

For more information about the web-based credential registry, which is expected to go public later in 2017, I invite you to visit www.credreg.net

About the Author
Roy A. Swift, Ph.D., COL, Retired
Executive Director, Workcred

Dr. Roy Swift is currently the executive director of Workcred and previously served as the chief workforce development officer and senior director of personnel credentialing accreditation programs at the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). Prior to ANSI, he was a consultant to educational, certification, licensure, and health care organizations. From 1993 to 1998 he was executive director of the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). This appointment followed a 28-year career in the United States Army Medical Department, where in his last position he was chief of the Army Medical Specialist Corps in the Army Surgeon General’s Office with policy responsibility for Army occupational therapists, physical therapists, dietitians, and physician assistants throughout the world.

Energy Department Launches New Manufacturing USA Institute Focused on Recycling and Reusing Materials


WASHINGTON — As part of the Manufacturing USA initiative, today the Energy Department announced its new Reducing Embodied-energy and Decreasing Emissions (REMADE) Institute, which will be headquartered in Rochester, New York and led by the Sustainable Manufacturing Innovation Alliance.  REMADE will leverage up to $70 million in federal funding, subject to appropriations, and will be matched by $70 million in private cost-share commitments from over 100 partners.

The REMADE Institute will focus on driving down the cost of technologies needed to reuse, recycle and remanufacture materials such as metals, fibers, polymers and electronic waste and aims to achieve a 50 percent improvement in overall energy efficiency by 2027. These efficiency measures could save billions in energy costs and improve U.S. economic competitiveness through innovative new manufacturing techniques, small business opportunities, and offer new training and jobs for American workers.

“The REMADE Institute is a key example of how public-private partnerships like Manufacturing USA are critical to advancing America’s low-carbon economy and strengthening manufacturing industries across the country,” said Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz. “This Institute will be an important catalyst to leverage innovation and energy efficient technologies that will reduce harmful emissions while creating jobs and building America’s 21st century economy.”

U.S. manufacturing accounts for nearly 25 percent of the nation’s total annual energy use. The physical products that are created as a result of manufacturing embody most of that energy. The research and deployment of cost-effective technologies that could reduce the energy used in materials production could offer energy savings of up to 1.6 quadrillion BTU annually in the U.S.– more than the electricity, oil and other energy consumed by New Hampshire, Hawaii, Delaware, Rhode Island, Washington, D.C. and Vermont combined.

Extracting raw materials like steel and aluminum for manufacturing is energy intensive as is the manufacturing process used to make products with these materials. By enabling recycling and remanufacturing (the rebuilding of original products using a combination of reused or recycled parts) technologies, the Institute will dramatically reduce life-cycle energy consumption for products and improve overall manufacturing efficiencies. The focus also includes new ways for information collecting; gathering, identification and sorting of end-of-life and waste materials; separating mixed materials; removal of trace contaminants and robust and cost-effective reprocessing and disposal methods.

REMADE is the fifth Energy Department-led institute in the multiagency network known as Manufacturing USA, also known as the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation. Since it was established four years ago, Manufacturing USA has grown from a single institute to a network of 13 institutes. Led by manufacturing experts renowned in their field, the Manufacturing USA Institutes have attracted over 1,300 companies, universities and nonprofits as members – starting with 65 members and now at more than 1,000.

The institutes continue to attract new business investment to their regions, develop cutting-edge technology and train American workers to apply new skills to our growing manufacturing sector. To date, the federal government’s commitment of more than $920 million has been matched by more than $1.87 billion in non-federal investment. For more information about the REMADE Institute and participating organizations, visit Energy.gov.

FREE SBA Workshops in February & March!



The SBA’s Fresno District Office is hosting free workshops in February and March.  Learn how to find & win government contracts, get an SBA loan to start or grow your small business, find out how to get certified as a Woman owned small business, get your 8a certification, and learn about exporting! SBA’s workshops are free and so is the parking at our beautiful downtown Fresno office.  Click on the links below to register and learn more.


Thursday, January 19 from 9:00 am – Noon


Friday, February 3rd, 9:00 am – Noon

Four Consecutive Fridays, February 10th,  17th, 24th, and March 3rd 1:30 – 3:30

Thursday, February 16th from 9:00 am – Noon 



February 23rd 9:00 am – Noon

International Trade Workshop – Understanding the Lucrative World of Exporting  

March 8 8:00 am – Noon in Hughson, CA

New and Up and Coming Laws

Signed Into Law!

AB 1419 (Eggman)
CRT Glass Recycling


Summary: AB 1419 is an important and urgently needed step toward addressing a significant flaw in California’s electronic waste recycling system by supporting the recycling of panel glass from monitors and televisions.

Position and Status: CAW is the sponsor of the bill.

  • Passed the legislature August 30th, 2016
  • Signed into law by Governor Brown September 22, 2016!

Read the Fact Sheet

Description: New LCD and LED technology for televisions and monitor screens has taken over and demand for old-fashioned Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) devices has dropped dramatically. The end-use market for CRT glass generated from recycling scrap CRT’s has dried up and recyclers across the nation are struggling with what to do with the glass. Many have even resorted to stockpiling this material in hopes of finding new outlets in the future.

The process of recycling scrap CRT monitors and televisions produces three different types of glass: funnel glass, which contains high levels of lead, and low and non-leaded panel glass which contains very low concentrations of lead, or no lead at all. The current CA regulations limit the options for recycling leaded funnel glass to smelting, glass to glass recycling for the production of new CRTs (currently only done by one company in India), or landfill disposal. Although non-leaded panel glass should be available for many other uses, the regulatory pathway for using these end markets has not been clearly developed.

The bill seeks to reduce the environmental risk inherent in the stockpiling and export of glass from monitors and televisions, by creating a recycling framework for CRT panel glass. This glass has been processed and rendered harmless for the variety of end-uses, and AB 1419 would clearly differentiate which recycling markets are appropriate for this material.

Contact CAW: Teresa Bui, (916) 443-5422

Contact Assemblymember Eggman

Current language, analysis, and votes

Organizations supporting AB 1419:

•    All eWaste, Inc.
•    Association of California Recycling Industries
•    Cali Resources, Inc.
•    Californians Against Waste
•    California Association of Local Conservation Corps (CALCC)
•    California Electronic Asset Recovery (CEAR)
•    California League of Conservation Voters (CLCV)
•    Cal Micro Recycling
•    Ecology Action
•    ECS Refining
•    Electronic Recyclers International
•    E-Recycling of California
•    Environmental Working Group
•    Fireclay Tile
•    Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), West Coast Chapter
•    Kleen Blast Abrasives
•    Marin County Hazardous & Solid Waste Management Joint Powers Authority
•    Napa Recycling & Waste Services
•    Northern California Recycling Association (NCRA)
•    Rural County Representatives of California (RCRC)
•    Sonoma County AB 939 Local Task Force
•    Sonoma County Waste Management Agency
•    Stopwaste
•    Technologies Displays Americas, LLC
•    Tycoon Materials, Inc. DBA Happy Recyclers

Signed Into Law!

AB 1239 (Atkins, Gordon)
Tire Recycling Program Reform


Summary: AB 2530 would simply require manufacturers to report the amount of virgin and post-consumer plastic they purchase

Summary: AB 1239 will help expand the state’s tire recycling infrastructure to reduce greenhouse gases, create jobs, and cut the statewide and local costs associated with tire cleanup.

Position and Status: CAW is the sponsor of AB 1239. The bill is no longer active.

  • Failed to pass the legislature before the August 31st deadline

Read the Fact Sheet

Description:  AB 1239 is authored by Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) and Assemblymember Rich Gordon (D-Menlo Park). This bill would provide incentive payments to end users of recycled tires in order to increase the state’s stagnant recycling rate and allow recyclers to compete with disposal, export, and illegal dumping alternatives. This bill gives CalRecycle the authority to increase the state tire fee to cover the costs of regulating waste tires (in an amount not to exceed $1.00/tire).

CAW Staff Contacts: Nick Lapis (916) 443-5422

Current Language, Analysis and Votes

Contact Assembly Speaker Atkins

Contact Assemblymember Gordon

Organizations supporting AB 1239:

Alameda Waste Management Authority and Recycling Board (Stop Waste)
BAS Recycling
Californians Against Waste (sponsor)
California Association of Local Conservation Corps
California League of Conservation Voters
California State Association of Counties
CRM Company
Environmental Action Committee of West Marin
Don’t Waste LA
Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy
Marin County Hazardous and Solid Waste Management JPA
Mojave Desert and Mountain Recycling
Napa Recycling and Waste Services
Rural County Representatives of California
Sonoma County, AB 939 Local Task Force
Zanker Recycling

Signed Into Law!

AB 2530 (Gordon)
Recycled Content Labeling on Beverage Containers


Summary: AB 2530 would simply require manufacturers to report the amount of virgin and post-consumer plastic they purchase the previous year.

Position and Status: CAW is the sponsor of this bill.

  • Passed the legislature August 25th, 2016
  • Signed into law by Governor Brown September 29th, 2016

Read the Fact Sheet

Description: AB 2530 would require the manufacturer of a beverage sold in a plastic beverage container, subject to the California Redemption Value (CRV), to annually report to CalRecycle on the amount of post-consumer recycled plastic and the amount of virgin plastic that they used in the past year for plastic beverage containers subject to the CRV.  CalRecycle would make this information available on its website. The reported data will help CalRecycle and policy makers to better assess market demand for California RPET manufacturing compares with current collection and recycling levels, in order to better inform future policy.

Signed Into Law!

AB 1005 (Gordon)
California Plastic Recycling


Summary: AB 1005 extends California’s Plastic Market Development Program to 2022.

Position and Status: AB 1005 is sponsored by CAW.

  • Passed the legislature August 25th, 2016
  • Signed into law by Governor Brown September 22nd, 2016!

Read the Fact Sheet

Description: This bill will extend the Plastic Market Development Program. The program has successfully increased the in-state processing and use of recycled plastic, spurring private investment and jobs. Prior to the existence of the program, less than 2 percent of plastic beverage containers collected for recycling were processed and manufactured into new products in California. The remainder was exported. By 2014, in-state plastic processing and use increased by more than 3,000 percent to almost 100,000 tons.

Contact CAW: Teresa Bui, (916) 443-5422

Contact Assembly Member Rich Gordon

Current language, analysis, and votes

Organizations supporting AB 1005:

California Nevada Beverage Association
Californians Against Waste (sponsor)
Central Contra Costa Solid Waste Authority
Clean Water Action
Ecopet Plastics
Epic Plastics
Global Plastics
Marin Sanitary Service
The National Association for PET Container Resources
Peninsula Packaging Company
Peninsula Plastics Recycling
RePET Inc.
Sonoma county Waste Management Agency
Talco Plastics Inc
Tri-CED Community Recycling
Verdeco Recycling, Inc
Zanker Recycling

Signed Into Law!

AB 199 (Eggman)
Sales Tax Exemption on Recycling Equipment


Summary: AB 199 would provide financial assistance in the form of sales tax exemption on equipment purchases to businesses that process or utilized recycled feedstock.

Position and Status: CAW is the sponsor of AB 199. AB 199 passed the legislature with bipartisan support and was signed by the Governor on October 11, 2015.

Description:  AB 199 is authored by Assemblymember Susan Eggman (D-Stockton). The bill would add recycled content manufacturing and processing to the successful Advanced Transportation and Alternative Sources Manufacturing Sales and Use Tax Exclusion Program. This will provide an important incentive to recycle more materials and reintroduce more recyclable materials into California’s manufacturing economy.

CAW Staff Contacts: Nick Lapis and Teresa Bui (916) 443-5422

Current Language, Analysis and Votes

AB 1447 (Alejo)
Minimum Recycled Content Standard


Summary: AB 1447 will set a 10% minimum recycled content for PET (plastic) food and beverage containers and extend the current 35% minimum recycled content on glass from just  in-state manufacturers to all glass bottles filled or manufactured in state.

Position and Status: CAW is the sponsor of AB 1447. This bill has been approved by the Assembly Natural Resources Committee but was held in the Assembly Committee on Appropriations.

Description:  AB 199 is authored by Assemblymember Luis Alejo (D-Salinas). PET recycling in California is facing incredible challenges, especially when it comes to making recycled PET commodities that have to compete in a marketplace with virgin PET. Drastic drops in oil prices have had the effect of undermining the demand and price for California-generated recycled materials—California recycled material processors and recycled product makers are starting to lose market share to out of state/country ‘virgin’ producers. This bill would require that, starting July 1, 2016, manufacturers of PET plastic packaging sold in CA must meet 10% minimum PET recycled content. Starting January 1, 2017 and every year thereafter, manufacturers of PET plastic packaging sold in CA must report to CalRecycle the amount of packaging made for sale, and the amount of rPET used in the manufacturing of that product.

CAW Staff Contacts: Teresa Bui (916) 443-5422

Contact Assemblymember Alejo

Organizations supporting AB 199:

Californians Against Waste (sponsor)
Assoc. of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers
Californians Against Waste
California Plastics Recyclers Coalition
California Refuse Recycling Coalition
Don’t Waste LA Project
Global Plastics
Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy
Marin Sanitary Service
Napa Recycling and Waste Services
Peninsula Packaging, LLC
Peninsula Plastics Recycling
Potential Industries
Tri-CED Community Recycling
Waste Management
Zanker Road Resource Management
Natural Resources Defense Council

JOIN EPA SMM Web Academy NEXT WEEK August 18 1:00pm ET

Thursday August 18, 1:00pm – 2:30pm EST

How Recycling got it’s Groove Back: Turning Up the Quality

REGISTER HERE for this FREE webinar or use the Registration URL:


Listen closely. Do you hear that?

The recycling stream is skipping a beat. Amid the bottles, cans, containers and paper that the system relies on, there are scores of misplaced materials creating problems for recycling operations nationwide. This would be cause for pause in normal times, but factor in poor markets and it becomes a call to action.

The good news? Turning up the quality knob in your program is easier than you’d think, and a number of communities have already done just that. In a shining example, The Recycling Partnership recently joined forces with MassDEP and communities across Massachusetts to diagnose the root causes of contamination, then build out and vet tools to eliminate the issues at their core. After nearly a year of development and piloting, the results are in, the tools are tested, and the on-the-ground lessons and resources are ready for you.

On August 18 join representatives from local programs, a hauler and MRF, MassDEP, and The Recycling Partnership as they outline their winning approach to dialing up quality. Hear the outcomes, share in the stories, and walk away with tangible tools – ready-to-implement task lists, printable graphic files, curbside SOPs, and the data to back it up – to get your stream back in tune.


Keefe Harrison, Executive Director, The Recycling Partnership

KeefeKeefe leads The Recycling Partnership, a dynamic industry collaboration transforming recycling in communities across America. Formerly, Keefe served as: a team leader for sustainability consultancy RRS, director of communications for the Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers, project director for the Southeast Recycling Development Council, and as a local government recycling consultant for the State of North Carolina. Keefe has worked in the recycling field since 1998, and is an active national speaker and published author on recycling and sustainability issues. She lives with her husband and two children in Walpole, NH.

Janice Paré, Municipal Recycling Analyst, MassDEP

JaniceJanice Paré is a Municipal Recycling Analyst in the Municipal Solid Waste Reduction Branch at the Massachusetts Dept of Environmental Protection (MassDEP). Prior to her current position, she served in the waste ban enforcement program at MassDEP. Janice gained her solid waste management experience while working with the Town of Westwood DPW and the Town of Hingham BOH. She has a Master’s in Public Health from Boston University and was the project coordinator for EPA’s first Health Impact Assessment during her time as a Public Health Fellow at EPA Region 1. One of her many projects at MassDEP includes working closely with The Recycling Partnership to develop a Quality Toolkit that will help municipalities reduce contamination in the recycling stream.

Patrick Mallalieu, Operations Supervisor, Republic Services

PatrickPatrick has been in the waste industry for 16 years. In that time has run residential subscription and contract routes, as well as roll-off collection. Currently he serves as an Operations Supervisor with Republic Services, handling 8 municipal contracts and 22 subscription routes. One of his key responsibilities is working with towns to promote safety and increase recycling.

Rob Colson, DPW Director, West Springfield MA

RobLike many in the recycling industry, Rob serves a host of functions simultaneously. As Director of Public Works for a town of 28,000 residents, he oversees the maintenance and repair of all Town owned parks, streets, sidewalks and trees, water treatment and distribution, and the collection of recyclables, solid waste, yard waste and bulky items. In recent months the quality of West Springfield’s recycling stream has become a key issue that he has personally addressed through a number of targeted initiatives.

Gunther Wellenstein, Solid Waste Manager, Lowell MA

guntherGunther is an effective municipal material management professional of nearly ten years, working to maximize recycling in a multi-cultural city of 106,500 residents. A proven project leader, he has implemented automated MSW (3/2009) and automated single stream recycling (1/2015), and his actions have reduced Lowell’s curbside disposal by 20,000 tons (annually), doubled recycling tonnage from 3,000 to 6,000 tons annually, and ultimately increased the city’s curbside recycling rate from 6.5% to 28%. Beyond bolstering traditional recycling tonnage, he works on contamination mitigation and food recovery – both curbside and on campus.

Jason Hale, Communications Lead, The Recycling Partnership

JasonJason brings two decades of recycling experience to the table, having worked across the industry in the public, private and nonprofit sectors at the local, state and national level. Throughout his career he has built upon skills gained through a marketing degree from the University of Virginia. Currently he’s part of the skilled communications team at The Recycling Partnership, forwarding the cutting edge of carts, communications and quality.

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