Four generations of recycling
From horse-drawn buggies to innovative technology solutions.
By: Nadine |
Regional Recycling is a family business, now with its fourth generation working on the company. Though the name has changed, recycling has been in his family since the early 1900s. Recycling is one of the country’s oldest professions, called scrapping back in the day. We still see it now with industrious locals who collect empties and scrap metal to earn money.
Founder, Leon Lotzkar, immigrated from Bulgari at the turn of the century and got to work building a life for his family. In those days, recycling was not a word often used but regularly executed. Recycling looked different at that time. It was the process of fixing and reusing household items and the growing practice of resmelting metals.
Metals were a booming industry throughout the first half of the 1900s. Due to WW1 and WW2, demands had never been higher, and technology was rapidly advancing. This is where Leon saw an opportunity. He joined his brother’s business, Pacific Junk, and eventually took it over and rebranded it as Pacific Metals. At that time, they picked up materials using only a horse and buggy.
In the early days of Pacific Metals, they collected any types of scraps they could. While metal was a priority, they’d even collect items like bones and scraps. As the years went on, they refined their business to focus on materials that could be locally processed and were in high demand.
Adaptation. This has been the ongoing practice for the Lotzkar recycling businesses. As the years went on, they added paper and plastic recycling to their business, and today the range is still growing.
8 Recycling Locations in BC
The Lotzkar recycling business is now known as Regional Recycling. With 8 locations across BC, they are one of the leaders of recycling. Not just by size, but again, by adaptation. When the team saw the public’s needs and desires changing, they came up with solutions to fit.
They can now recycle a wide range of appliances, electronics, building materials, paper products, empties, and, of course, scrap metals. You can find the complete list of materials here.
Innovation has not only focused on the processing of materials. It has shifted to convenience for its customers. As a result, two new services have been added to Regional Recycling’s roster.
FastDrop gives customers the ability to drop off their bags of unsorted empties and be out of the depot in minutes. They can either open a free account and receive their full deposit via e-transfer or pick up their cash next time they’re in the depot.
The other innovation is called Depozip. This service is launching in early June 2021 and is comparable to services like Doordash or Uber. With just a few clicks, customers schedule a time for their empties to be picked up from their homes. There are no fees, it’s free to join, and you don’t need to fuss with sorting your empties! Depozip is rolling out as a free service, and after the initial launch period, customers will be charged by being deducted a small portion of their return!