What to do with Packing Peanuts


Ah, the packing peanut.

These little boogers usually end up as an unwanted by-product of much-wanted stuff. I was kind of disappointed that these packing peanuts came to me in a package from a company who makes waste free body care products.



Packing peanuts are made of polystyrene, the same stuff your styrofoam take-out box is made of. This means packing peanuts are a number 6 plastic, which several recycling programs do not accept.


Reusing or repurposing items is better than recycling. I couldn’t remember the last time I personally used packing peanuts, so I decided to take a stroll into town and ask UPS if they could reuse them.


I wasn’t sure if the UPS employees would think my inquiry was strange.

“Uh hey, want some packing peanuts?”

But the woman at the front desk was grateful.

“Great, thanks! We will put these to good use.”

That was easy!