Ron Perkins has been named to the newly created position of executive director of the Washington-based Ag Container Recycling Council. The ACRC is a non-profit organization that collects and recycles plastic pesticide containers from U.S. farmers and applicators, mostly free of charge.

“Ron Perkins is a dedicated and nationally recognized pioneer in the solid waste management profession with an excellent track record in developing cost-effective recycling models and enterprises,” said Johnny Berry, chairman of ACRC. “His main goal will be to develop new sustainable strategies for collecting and recycling plastic.”

“Crop Life America members have helped fund the ACRC for more than a decade,” said Jay Vroom, chairman of CLA, the umbrella group for nation’s pesticide manufacturers and distributors. “Ron is the right person to take this program to the next level.”

“The Ag Container Recycling Council has successfully collected and recycled plastic pesticide containers in more than 30 states for over a decade,” said Perkins. “I am honored to become executive director and to build upon ACRC’s exemplary achievements in environmental stewardship.”

One of the first ag container recycling programs was started by Rex Livingston, a farmer from Leland, Miss., in the late 1980s.

Prior to joining CLA, Perkins spent 14 years as the owner and operator of solid waste management firms, implementing innovative and cost-effective refuse and recyclables collection systems. He also spent almost 10 years as director of Recycling Operations at American Plastic Council, where he directed nationwide field research for production of the widely acclaimed How to Collect and How to Sort Plastic for Recycling manuals, designed to improve recycling economics and sustainability.

Perkins also focused on strategy and advanced research and development projects for APC. He ran field programs identifying economically sustainable recovered plastic packaging collection and processing systems.

In addition to his deep experience in the recycling of plastic containers, Perkins brings a strong business background to his position. Earlier in his career, he led marketing and management teams at Stearns, Conrad and Schmidt Consulting Engineers and the City of Portland, Ore., where he advised clients on a wide range of solid waste management projects.

He holds an M.B.A. from Dartmouth College and graduated with a B.S. from University of Maine.

The Ag Container Recycling Council has also launched a new Web site at www.acrecycle.org. The redesigned site is intended as a comprehensive resource for ag container recycling and includes detailed information on how to recycle and best practices for recycling. It details the entire process from collection of containers to the development of end use products.

Features of the site include:

-- Downloadable how-to-use videos for rinsing and recycling

-- An easy online order form for training materials

-- A map of local ACRC contractors with contact information

-- Links to additional recycling resources

-- A listing of 30 member companies who pay the entire cost of the ACRC container-recycling program.

“The new ACRC Web site reflects our continued commitment to promoting ag container recycling and environmental stewardship,” said Don Bradley, ACRC vice chairman.

“Since 1992, the ACRC has collected 82 million pounds of plastic containers which have been recycled into useful products such as corrugated drain tile and marine pilings that otherwise would have been dumped in land fills.

“In launching the new Web site, we hope the new easy-to-navigate format will encourage others to see how simple it is to get involved and do their part for the good of the environment.”

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